Close calls in shut-out victory

BY WENDI REARDON PRICE
Clarkston News Sports Writer
Fans were on the edge of their seats with a few seconds remaining in the Wolves’ home game against Groves.
The visiting team kept putting shots on the Clarkston Boys Varsity Soccer team’s net and the shots didn’t make it in.
“It was nerve-wracking a little bit,” admitted Ian Jones, head coach, after the game. “It should have never gotten to that point. We dominated from start to finish, but if you don’t score enough goals you put yourself in that situation, that’s what I told them at the end.”
The Wolves finished the game with a 1-0 win with their lone goal made by junior Nick Merritt 11 minutes into the game. Junior Ethan Wise assisted on the goal.
Jones added freshman Richie Ludwig and sophomore Jacob Murray stood out for the night.
“Those two were outstanding the whole game,” he said. “Ritchie on the ball and Jake winning the ball and pressing the ball. Ethan running on top didn’t have his goal he normally gets, but he is a very good player. He is always dangerous. He wasn’t on full tonight but he was still a threat.”

Owen Dollins and Nick Merritt celebrate Merritt’s goal against Groves. Photo by John Ransom/Winship Studio

He added junior Brandon Willis did great in the net. Willis saved a free shot by Groves with five minutes left in the game and had a save just 30 seconds prior to that while also marking unsuccessful Groves’ header with 30 seconds remaining in the game.
“He was great with the save. He got himself a yellow card but it was a great save,” Jones said. “They all played well.”
The Wolves posted a 2-1 win over Grand Blanc, Aug. 29, with goals from sophomore Dylan Walker and senior Ethan Wise.
The game was called with four minutes left due to weather.
“It was like this game – we dominated,” said Jones. “We didn’t finish the chances when we could have and in the last 5-10 minutes it becomes a game again. Problem is not scoring enough goals. The games aren’t as close as the scores suggest. We just have to work on finishing better.”
The span between the two games was a week, which helped the boys out.
“We could work on things we did in the game,” said Jones. “It’s early in the season so you are never consistent.”
The Wolves opened the week on Monday at Royal Oak and played Rochester Adams on Tuesday.
“It’s always a tough game,” Jones said going into the game. “They are always a threat and athletically strong.”
Clarkston hosts Lapeer on Thursday and North Farmington on Tuesday, Sept. 17. JVA begins at 5:30 p.m., varsity follows.