A game by two of the top soccer powers in Mecklenburg County that figured to be close Tuesday night wasn’t. The unbeaten South Mecklenburg Sabres dominated the once-beaten Providence Panthers 4-1 at Providence in a SoMeck 8 4A matchup.
The game was originally scheduled for Sept. 30 but was postponed to Tuesday night because of poor field conditions as a result of heavy rain.
The Sabres looked very collected for most of the game while the Panthers appeared nervous and tentative. Providence was still in the game at the start of the second half trailing only 1-0. But the Sabres scored three times in an eight-minute span early in the half to put the match out of reach.
“We were very fortunate tonight and it’s a great result for us,” said South Meck coach Eric White. “We grinded it out, scored some really nice goals and I’m proud of the guys.”
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The Sabres got goals from senior co-captain Marco Garcia, Carter Walters and Manuel Figueroa. South Meck also benefited from a Providence own-goal.
“I think we came out strong and definitely controlled the match,” said Walters, one of 14 Sabres seniors. “Ultimately, it came down to us finishing our chances that we created. At the end of the day our back line looked strong and all of that put together produced the win.”
The lone Providence goal in the 48th minute was pretty. Nick Aparicio collected the ball deep in the box and passed it to Jackson Perry at the top of the arc. Perry’s 35-yard laser found the upper-right corner of the net and cut the Sabres lead to 3-1.
Quote: “I think for us we were inferior a little bit and we didn’t need to be. I would have loved to have played it when it was scheduled because we were flying off the back of the Ardrey Kell game (a 1-0 Panthers win). But unfortunately with the weather that’s how it works. But for the boys to have lost two games in the first half of the season I think it’s a little disappointing. But I’m really proud of the boys.” Providence coach Nathan Williams.
Worth mentioning: The Sabres outshot Providence 11-1 in the first half and 21-7 for the match. … The rematch is at South Meck on Oct 26.
Records: South Mecklenburg (13-0-1, 9-0), Providence (11-2-2, 6-2-1)
What’s next: South Meck will play its third game in three days Wednesday, hosting West Mecklenburg at 6 p.m., while Providence also plays its third game in as many days at home Wednesday against Berry at 6 p.m.