Thursday, September 30, 2010

Rock Bridge's narrow soccer victory no surprise against Hickman

BY Blair Weaver
COLUMBIA — With a crosstown rivalry, it’s not just your ordinary mid-season game, it goes much deeper than that.

“There’s just a different feel of the game, it feels just like a state game,” Rock Bridge boys soccer coach Kyle Austin said. "The kids get so over-hyped that I have to calm them down.”

The crowd gets sufficiently larger. The feel of the game just isn’t quite the same. Emotions come into play, and with two high schools in the same town, your rivals aren’t always complete strangers.

“There are a lot of emotions. You have to learn how to suppress them and I don’t think we did that tonight,” Hickman coach Adam Taylor said. “But besides the rivalry, it’s still the same game. Eleven players, one ball.”

The Bruins defeated the Kewpies 1-0 Wednesday night at Hickman’s Robert M. LeMone Field. Rock Bridge junior Kory McDonald scored the lone goal in the second half. After having two assists this season, McDonald, a defender, scored his first goal Wednesday from about 30 yards out, the ball spinning right through the Hickman keeper’s hands.

The close game was not a surprise with Rock Bridge (10-4) and Hickman (8-3-1) boasting similar records.

“With games like these, the final score is expected to be 1-0, and that’s exactly what happened,” Austin said.