Young Nets Five Goals To Lead Southwestern Past Fredonia
The beauty in sports is that any given night you can see something special.
It didn’t take long to see what was special about Monday’s soccer game at Charles A. Lawson Field.
A five-goal performance, including a first-half hat trick by Connor Young, lifted the Southwestern Trojans to a dominant 6-0 victory over the Fredonia Hillbillies in Chautauqua-Cattaraugus Athletic Association play at Southwestern High School.
Southwestern (10-3-0, 7-1-0) was in clear control of the game the entire way. Just 34 seconds into the contest, Young found the back of the net.
“We came in knowing Fredonia was going to be a tough team,” said Young. “We knew we had to get one quick and hopefully it would shut them down, and luckily it did.”
After a feed from Seth Vaughn in the eighth minute, Young snuck a shot in the low far corner of the net to double the lead. The early lead was nothing new for the Trojans, who also held a 3-0 lead over Fredonia in the last matchup between the two teams.
“We’ve been putting up goals pretty quickly to get games started, and that’s huge. When you can play in the lead, usually it means good things for the rest of the night,” said Trojans head coach Jason Deering.
Deering also credited the one-two punch of Young and Vaughn offensively and defensively.
“Not many teams can handle what those two do, not just offensively, but defensively too,” said Deering. “That’s puts teams under a lot of pressure.”
Fredonia (8-4-1, 5-3-0) struggled to get pressure offensively early on, and fell into a 2-0 hole before ever mounting a major scoring chance of its own.
Neither Young nor Vaughn were done as Vaughn dished out a beautiful pass through traffic to Young at the top of the box for a blast into the top left corner of the net for the hat trick.
“With our team, in practice everybody comes and works hard. Everybody comes with a desire to get better, and today it definitely showed,” said Young.
Vaughn was later rewarded for his unselfishness offensively with an easy goal of his own off a rebound in the 38th minute of play for a 4-0 Southwestern lead going into the break.
“They came out quickly and established themselves. … It put us on our heels,” said Hillbillies head coach Jim Rush. “Credit to them, they came out ready to play. They took it to us.”
Young picked up right where he left off after the break, with two more goals early in the second half — capped by a kick over his head with his back turned to the net in the 51st minute.
“I was pretty impressed with the over-the-head kick,” said Deering. “He just has a knack to get the ball on net. He creates a lot of things for us. I feel like it puts a lot of pressure on a lot of teams, which opens it up for our other really good players.”
Young’s fifth goal of the contest set a new career high for the sophomore, who now sits at 23 goals this season.
“It just reminds me of the past, how much hard work we’ve all put in during the summer conditioning,” said Young. “Thanks to my teammates for making everyone better.”
Going all the way back to Deering’s time as a modified coach, the six goals scored against Fredonia is a career high for Deering against the Fredonia program he calls a rival.
“I haven’t put six goals on Fredonia, none of my teams have,” said Deering. “Whenever you have a team that is usually a close competitor of yours that you can win against pretty handily … that’s nice, that’s a good feeling. That’s confidence that we need as we finish up the regular season and start heading into playoffs.”
Southwestern now looks ahead to a matchup with Jamestown on Saturday at 5 p.m., back on its home turf.
Fredonia travels to Allegany-Limestone next on Wednesday.
“It doesn’t get any easier. … We’ve got to learn from this, no hanging of the heads. We’ll look at things and go from there,” said Rush.