BY CHUCK VANDENBERG
WEST POINT – Senior Audrae Vincent scored a season-high five goals for the subless Crusaders in an 8-1 win over Wapello in the nightcap at South Park Field Thursday night.
Head Coach Ryan Culbertson played the whole game with out any substitutes. The team’s leading scorer, senior Adam Rauenbuehler was out nursing an injury.
But Vincent took up most of the slack scoring early and often as he converted five of seven shots on goal.
On the other side of the field junior Blake Crabtree was having a stellar game at the net.
“I think as long as the defense holds and keeps the ball outside the 18 I have an easier time making saves,” Crabtree said.
The Crusaders take on Burlington Notre Dame Monday night. The Nikes have given up just two goals in seven games and are just a 1-0 loss to Davenport North away from a perfect season.
Crabtree gave up four goals to the Nikes in a season-opening invitational at the Baxter Sports Complex last month and said to win, the Crusaders will have to keep the Nikes out of the middle of the field.
“I think we need to force them outside. If they do that, I think I can get up in the air and stop some of their crosses,” Crabtree.
Culbertson said the team played tired, but was able to slow the pace and move the ball better between midfielders and scorers in the latter half to save some energy.
“I had no substitutes, these nine boys played the entire 80 minutes. They were tired,” Culbertson said.
He complimented Vincent on his play, and commended the team on the reduced errors without having any substitutions.
“They improved immensely tonight and played an almost mistake free second half,” he said. “Are the mistakes going to come back, probably, but that was probably one of the best second halves we’ve played so far this year. And that’s with some tired kids.”
Sophomore Colby Bredemeyer managed get his second and third goals of the year, before launching a couple shots into the dark West Point sky trying to get his first ever hat-trick.
Freshman Mitchell Pothitakis had four assists and some nifty footwork keeping the ball in the middle field and shot off some good angles for runners up from the sides.
The Crusaders take on Burlington Notre Dame Monday night in junior high, varsity girls, varsity boys tripleheader with games starting at 4:30 p.m.