Rangers take over first place in Southwest 10

Published 7:56 am Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Cassopolis seniors Kiambu Gary and Joshua Canterbury have the Rangers riding high this season.

Cassopolis blanked visiting Hartford 2-0 Monday night in a battle of the top two teams in the newly formed Southwest 10 Conference.

Canterbury scored the match-winner in the 11th minute off an assist from Gary.

Gary scored the second and final goal of the night in the 17th minute.

“Our team played really tough and battled for every ball,” Cassopolis coach Austin Francis said. “We had good possession and moved it much better in the first half and capitalized on the few opportunities we were given. Hartford is a really good team, but our guys wanted this win more than I have ever seen before.”

The Rangers’ defense and the goalkeeping of Zachary Friske, who played in place of the injured starter Jason Sopaseuth, made those goals stand up the remaining 63 minutes.

“For his first full game as keeper, Zach did a heck of a job with 13 saves and has great guys playing defense around him,” Francis said. “Brett (Williams) and Eian  (Forrest) often do not get a lot of credit, but they pressure really well in the midfield and get the ball where we need it.  I’m really proud of our whole team and the total 80-minute effort. 

“Lane (Francis) and Todd (Bussey) played the full 80 minutes and Lane encouraged and sometimes even demanded consistent intensity out of everyone on the field.

The Indians outshot Cassopolis (8-3, 5-0 Southwest 10) 13-4.

Friske made all 13 saves.

Hartford goalkeeper Rudy Martinez was credited with one save.

The Rangers are back in action Wednesday when they travel to Bloomingdale for a 7 p.m. Southwest 10 match.

The Cardinals are currently in third place. Bloomingdale was 2-2 in the league heading into Monday night’s match against Eau Claire.