Clay beats West 5-1 on Senior Night


Michael Hamilton

The Clay Panthers picked up their eighth win of the season, as they topped the West Senators 5-1 Tuesday night. Celebrating Senior Night at Clay High School, the Panthers went on a scoring spree in the first half, scoring five goals.

Clay Soccer Coach Mark Trapp was impressed with his team’s play.

“It was a great way for the seniors to go out like that,” said Trapp. “Aaron Keyser got the night started with scoring, and just does a great job. He can control how the field goes, both offensively and defensively.”

Fellow senior Jordan Collier also helped control the field to give Clay the four goal victory.

“We pushed him up to play offense more than defense,” said Trapp. “He has played defense pretty much, these last couple years.”

The first half of the match was completely dominated by the Panthers. In the first few minutes of the half, Clay struck with a quick goal by Panther senior Aaron Keyser. The assault on the Senator goalkeeper continued throughout the remaining minutes of the half.

The Panther offense kept the Senator defense in a constant state of movement and reaction, as they compiled over ten shots on the goal, during the first half.

Clay controlled possession all throughout the first half, in thanks to their offense and some excellent play by the Panthers’ defense. The combination led to West only getting one shot on Clay’s goal, which came in the waning minutes of the first half.

Panther senior, Jordan Collier, struck twice, with two goals in the first half. He along with fellow teammates Tommy Adams, and Tyler Knittel all found the back of the Senators’ net.

Even though they were trailing by five goals, the Senators continued to play hard in the second half. After allowing five unanswered goals in the first half, West’s defense came out playing with a much more aggressive attitude in the second half.

The Senator offense also showed more aggression, as they seemed determined to not be blanked by the Panthers.

West refused to not score at least one goal, as the Senators took advantage of an out of place goalkeeper to give West their only score of the game, early on in the second half.

The more aggressive style of play shown by the Senators in the second half also paid off in getting more shots on the Panthers’ goal.

Limited to a single shot on the goal in the first half, the Senators took more chances in the second half and had five total shots on the goal.

The Panthers had several opportunities to score a few more goals in the second half, but a few misplaced kicks as well as some impressive saves by West’s goalkeepers kept the Panthers scoreless in the second half.

This year’s Panther Soccer team has improved greatly from last season, according to Trapp.

Next up for the Panthers will be a matchup against Valley on Thursday evening. The match is scheduled for a 5:30 PM start, and will be played at Clay High School.

The Senators will also be in action on Thursday, as they take on the Wheelersburg Pirates in Wheelersburg. That matchup is also scheduled for a 5:30 p.m. start.

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