Grove City Record

Soccer

Central Crossing boys looking to blend talent

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Central Crossing's Antonio Ortiz (18) tries to maneuver between Tryston Tanner (16) and Tyler Dunn of Grove City during their game on Aug. 30. The Comets were 2-7-2 overall before playing Thomas Worthington on Sept. 25.
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Coach Chas McCutcheon is trying to get the forwards on his Central Crossing High School boys soccer team on the same page.

The Comets were 2-7-2 overall after a 2-0 loss at Tree of Life on Sept. 20.

"We need to get everyone to work together up front," said McCutcheon, whose team was 0-4 in the OCC-Central Division before playing Thomas Worthington on Sept. 25. "We have a lot of individual talent up there, but they need to be working together."

The Comets found the net four times in a 4-0 win over Whitehall on Sept. 17. Antonio Ortiz, Rogelio Ortiz, Alex Potts and Oscar Velasco-Ramirez all scored once. Goalkeeper Austin Potts had five saves and backup Kiel Newton added three.

"I think we need to have better communication up front," said Rogelio Ortiz, a senior forward. "When you talk to each other, it makes it easier to know where your teammates will be and where you need to pass the ball. If we are able to talk more that should definitely help us in the coming weeks."

McCutcheon said extra work in practice can help the forwards mesh during games.

"We really need to finish. We have the opportunities, but have trouble putting the ball in goal," he said. "We have lots of drills we can work on to help our finishing, but we have to be able to do it at game pace. We have to be able to put it in (the goal) at game pace."

While he's looking for more from his forwards, McCutch-eon said the defense has been playing well and the midfield has become the team's strength.

"The experience of the players in the midfield is incredible," McCutcheon said. "Guillermo (Vasquez), A.B. (Lopez-Ramirez) and Oscar (Velasco-Ramirez) have played the game since they were babies. A.B. and Oscar are cousins and have always played together."

McCutcheon also has been impressed with the play of Potts in goal and the defense in front of him.

"Austin has been crucial for us and has saved some balls that I'm not sure a lot of goalies could get to," McCutcheon said of his goalie, who had four saves against Tree of Life. "He has put in the extra work -- his work ethic is tremendous -- and he keeps a positive attitude all of the time.

"Drew Siders really stepped up (defensively) for us (against Tree of Life). Brendan Eal and David Son have really played well a lot in the back for us."

Siders said the Comets have to make sure they possess the ball more on both ends of the field. That alone, he said, will lead to more success.

"We need to work on possessing the ball and we need to make the passes instead of trying to take on all 11 guys at once," he said. "Possessing the ball can be your best defense and we have to possess the ball in the back and in the midfield first."

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