Rebels roll over Rams
COLUMBIANA –Crestview boys soccer flexed its muscles and showed why its ranked ninth in the state in Div. III en route to a 16-0 win over Mineral Ridge on Tuesday.
Mitchell Auer scored five goals and added a pair of assists for the Rebels (6-0). Teammate Nick Novak chimed in with a hat trick and six assists.
Crestview’s offense was ruthless as it dodged defenders and executed timely passes, which led to strong kicks to the net.
“We did a lot of switches and crosses. That’s when it usually got to me,” Auer said. “We’d move it in. We’d move it out, then send the cross down the line, and put it in the center and I’m there to put it in.”
The Rebels appear to be on a mission this season after losing in the district semifinal to South Range a season ago. During this contest with the Rams, Crestview put an emphasis on placing the ball accurately and finding the open man, which it believes will pay off against tougher opponents.
“We really wanted to improve on passing because when we get into the bigger games we can outrun the opponents, we can outpass them, and get them tired,” Auer said. “That really helps in the playoffs.”
Not only did Crestview provide plenty of highlights on offense, but its defense limited how often the Rams (1-6) reached its side of the field. There were only a couple shots on goal for the visitors.
Crestview head coach Robert Auer said the home win was special for several reasons.
“We had a lot of rotation on the ball. We had a lot of people contribute. We were able to find ways for our defense to contribute even though they didn’t feel much pressure,” the coach said. “This was a good complete game for us. We showed that not only can we make smart plays and use our athleticism and running ability, but we’ve focused on our passing game so we can get that entire package.”
The Rebels also got two goals from Matt Deniro. Teammates Colt Crane, Andrew Bucey, Kyler Hoon, Cutter Crane, William Welch, Mitchell Muntean, and Nick Jaskola each had one goal.
Crestview’s Quinn Bulick added two assists.
Mineral Ridge’s Clayton Butler tallied 14 saves.
¯ Crestview will visit Badger at 5 p.m. on Thursday.
¯ Mineral Ridge will host Columbiana at 7 p.m. on Thursday.
¯ The Rebels have gone 34 regular-season games without a loss (32-0-2).
¯ Their last loss was on Aug. 27, 2019, versus Cardinal Mooney (3-2).
¯ Novak is three goals away from reaching 20 on the season.
¯ When asked about Crestview being ranked ninth in the state by the Ohio Scholastic Soccer Coaches Association, Robert Auer said it’s a good boost for his club.
“That’s very important. The kids notice that before the coaches. It is a goal for them to be ranked. It’s a goal for them to go deep in the playoffs,” Auer said. “To be recognized like that gives them all confidence, because people can see what they accomplished. Not just people at this field.”
¯ The Rams suffered their fifth straight loss, but they will have five of their next six games at home.