Spruce Mountain’s Logan Howes (3) and Oak HIll’s Seth Dyer (21) go head-to-head for the ball in a soccer game in Wales on Thursday afternoon.

WALES — The Oak Hill Raiders brushed off Spruce Mountain’s tenacity with poise and focused on their finesse game of patiently passing the ball on senior day.

The depleted Phoenix, who were missing many of their players due to injuries and other matters, didn’t rattle playoff-bound Oak Hill, which slipped away with a 2-0 victory in a soccer game Thursday afternoon.

“We have made some considerable progress over the last couple of months,” Oak Hill coach Bill Worth said. “We have really changed their concept of the game, the way they see the game, the way they see the field.”

Worth wasn’t concerned with facing a physical team like Spruce Mountain.

“It prepares them for playing against teams,” Worth said. “Most of these guys are sophomores and so we had two seniors on the field … so playing against bigger kids is certainly a challenge.

“And I appreciate that they kept their heads about them. Just played their game and didn’t let the physicality get into their heads.”

After a back-and-forth battle in the middle of the field, senior Ethan Ivy blast the ball to the left of Spruce Mountain goalie Brady Walp and scored the Raiders’ first goal on a Caleb Leighton assist to put Oak Hill ahead, 1-0, going into the half.

In the second half, both teams got their second wind, but the Phoenix failed to capitalize on several scoring opportunities.

The Raiders were also pressing and eventually collected their second goal.

With Oak Hill (5-7-2) rushing the Spruce Mountain net, Owen Cavanaugh slipped the ball inside for a goal and Leighton picked up his second assist.

“There is only so much you can do when you have one sub on the bench,” Spruce Mountain coach Kyle Sawyer said. “We have probably a quarter of our team out with injuries and other things so when you can’t rotate subs, people just get tired.

“It is definitely hard not having a lot of my team out on the field.”

Spruce Mountain goalie Brady Walp (99) leaps into action as teammate Jonathon Brenner (22) and Oak Hill’s Caleb Leighton (17) try to head the ball in a soccer game in Wales on Thursday afternoon.Spruce Mountai’s Drew Delaney races for the ball as Landon Brochu (7) watches in a soccer game against Oak Hill in Wales on Thursday afternoon.


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