Crook County builds 3-0 lead, then holds on for 3-2 win in Intermountain Hybrid soccer action

The Crook County Cowboys built a big early lead, then held on to take a 3-2 win over the Redmond Panthers in Thursday-afternoon Intermountain Hybrid soccer LON AUSTIN/CENTRAL OREGONIAN - Diego Nunez passes the ball past a Redmond defender. Nunez scored one of the Cowboys' goals in a 3-2 victory over the Panthers.

“It was a very good game,” said Crook County forward Christian Hernandez, who scored the Cowboys’ first goal. “I’m proud of my team. Every since the beginning, we said that we wanted to win this game and we came out and won it.”

The goal by Hernandez came less than five minutes into the game. He took the ball deep on the left side of the field, and then headed the ball past the Redmond goalkeeper into the far post where it ricocheted into the goal. The Cowboys scored again late in the first half when Kohlter Kee put a perfect pass behind the Panther defense and Zane Abrams outran the defense to the ball. Redmond’s goalie came out to contest the play, but Abrams deftly put the ball past the goalkeeper and into the back of the net.

Diego Nunez scored the Cowboys’ third goal midway through the second half on a shot from outside the 18-meter line from in front of the goal.

“That was a great goal by Nunez,” Crook County Head Coach Joel Carrillo said. “He put a lot of effect on the ball and it came down and went in the goal.”

With what looked like an insurmountable lead, the Cowboys began to drop back on defense. The Panthers took advantage of the change in strategy and scored two late goals, the second coming with less than four minutes left in the contest.

“In the second half, we were defending most of the time,” Hernandez said. “They got more scoring opportunities and that’s how they caught up at the end, but we were still playing very intense at the end.”

The remainder of the game, the Panthers were able to pressure the Cowboys, but they were unable to score as Crook County held on for the win.

“Every day, we progress and progress,” said Head Coach Joel Carrillo. “The team is still young. Most of them are sophomores and they have a really good future.”

With the win the Cowboys are now 4-1-1 on the year. Crook County is back in action this afternoon when they host the Ridgeview Ravens in a 3 p.m. Special District I contest.

“It will be a really hard game,” Carrillo said of the matchup with the Ravens. “But we will focus on that game because it’s a league game and we have to win it.”

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