To start this year’s Mid-Suburban League season, the defending MSL Champions from Buffalo Grove came to town. The 2018 match-up between our Broncos and BG resulted in a 4-1 loss for our boys, late last October. With that defeat in the backs of our minds, our players were acutely aware of the fact that tonight’s game would require a solid effort to start the league campaign off with a win.
From the opening whistle it was apparent that we would be making a serious effort to keep the ball and dictate the rhythm of the game. Buffalo Grove allowed us the keep possession in our own defensive third, occasionally applying some mild pressure. After a few moments of nerves led to three miscues along our back line we settled in and started to move the possession higher up the pitch where we might be able to turn it into chances for goals. Brendan Lodl was instrumental in triggering the attack, finding seams and switching play. CJ Steib also instigated a few opportunities with his flighted balls and occasional runs.
The game went from good to better with the insertion of Chris Guerra and Brian Yang into the striker positions, allowing Henry Wachsman and Aidan Lew to fall into midfield. The energy up front and poise in midfield accelerated the attack and led to our Broncos seeming more dangerous in the Bison half of play.
After halftime, our players continued to be on the front foot, and while not as sharp as in the first forty minutes, a few more chances did start to come our way. Despite that, the game stayed deadlocked at 0-0 well into the second half. Coach Steib thought the game appeared to be “one of those games” that looked destined for overtime. A couple of players from each squad started to suffer from muscle cramps, resulting in their inability to continue, and other players while not cramping were definitely showing signs of fatigue. Perhaps this would be a goalless affair. Steib inserted midfielders Michael Horak and Efren Vega back into the match, along with centerback Alex Hausser with just under 10 minutes remaining. The hope was that their fresh legs could bring some added life to the match. Before that could have a chance to occur, a Bronco corner kick presented itself.
Alex Hausser ventured forward at the direction of the Barrington bench, hoping he might be able to challenge the BG defense – and that he did, meeting the corner kick delivery of Wachsman and powering a header past the Bison keeper, off the crossbar and into the back of the net! Barrington 1, Buffalo Grove 0.
The remaining nine minutes of the match were seen out by the hosts and the three points in the conference standing went to our Broncos. While it’s only the first match of the conference schedule, Buffalo Grove is expected to be one of the top teams in the league, so earning the win could end up being a critical result in the conference.
The Broncos will enjoy a few days of recovery and practice with the Barrington Classic Tournament awaiting them, beginning next Monday (Labor Day.) Our squad takes on Rockford Boylan at 2pm on Monday, with the tournament continuing all of next week.
BHS – Alex Hausser (Henry Wachsman) 71st minute
Fouls: BHS 10, BGHS 7
Corner Kicks: BHS 4, BGHS 4
Offsides: BHS 0, BGHS 4
BRONCOS “MAN OF THE MATCH”