Panthers continue run of success over Lakers in 4-2 win

by Jeff Lajoie
Sports Reporter

Moultonborough Academy midfielder Christian Marsh tries to dribble away from Inter-Lakes' Owen Billin during the first half of the host Panthers' 4-2 win on Homecoming Saturday. Jeff Lajoie. (click for larger version)
September 26, 2016
MOULTONBOROUGH One week removed from a 6-0 loss to rival Moultonborough Academy, the Inter-Lakes High School boys' soccer team was looking for an improved performance in the rematch on Saturday. Despite falling behind early, the Lakers did play better, though the host Panthers made it a successful Homecoming with a 4-2 win that completed the season sweep of their Route 25 foe.

Moultonborough (6-2-1) jumped out to a quick 1-0 lead in just the eighth minute of action, as Cam Bennett's shot on goal skipped through the hands of I-L goalkeeper Hunter Sanders. MA senior Connor Porusta pounced on the rebound, pumping it into the back of the net for an early advantage.

The high-powered Panthers wasted little time adding to their lead. Just one minute later, Porusta beat his defender to a high ball off a free kick taken by Brendyn Marsh, and he headed it into the back of the net for a 2-0 lead that set the tone on Homecoming.

What looked like another onslaught continued in the 14th minute, when Ryan Kresco blasted home a goal from distance that snuck under the crossbar for a 3-0 advantage.

While fortunes and momentum were certainly against them, the Lakers didn't go away quietly. Buoyed by a spark off the bench in the form of diminutive freshman Brady Poehler, Inter-Lakes came charging back. Poehler and fellow midfielder Alex Losada teamed up well, and the rookie eventually scored his first career varsity goal in the 38th minute of play. Nathan Manville's free kick from 35 yards out clanked off the crossbar, and the rebound fell to the foot of Poehler, who banged home his golden opportunity and drew a fired up I-L team back within 3-1.

With new life, the Lakers came out flying in the second half. I-L nearly pulled within a goal in the 42nd minute, when Quinn Taylor's cross to Eli Dupigny was eventually turned away at the last second by MA goalkeeper Andre Sturgeon.

Continuing to push forward for a chance to make a game of it, the Lakers were ultimately caught by a high-scoring Moultonborough squad in the 64th minute. Off another strong Marsh free kick, the ball again eluded the grasp of Sanders, and Christian Marsh got a foot on the ball and steered it into the mixer. Bennett and a pack of Inter-Lakes defenders all converged on the ball, and it somehow trickled across the goal line for a tally that put the Panthers on top, 4-1.

I-L got a late goal from Quinn Taylor to pull back within 4-2, but the Panthers held on and continued their dominance in the recent series with Inter-Lakes.

The girls' game played just after the boys' tilt saw the visiting Lakers break through one week after the two sides tied in Meredith. Thanks to goals from Kailee Bennett and Mollie Durand, Inter

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