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BOYS' PREP SOCCER: E'town blank Green Wave (09/04)

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By Greg Crews

 

By GREG CREWS gcrews@thenewsentprise.com ELIZABETHTOWN — The Elizabethtown Panthers really seem to buy into the old adage that the best defense is a good offense. The Panthers limited visiting Meade County to just two shots (one on frame), while their offense kept the Green Wave defense busy all night as they cruised to a 4-0 victory in a 10th District game. “We possessed the ball well and we switched fields a lot,” Elizabethtown senior sweeper Nick Link said. “We got that early goal and we settled in and kept the shutout.” Elizabethtown (4-1 overall, 2-0 district) bombarded Meade County (3-2-1, 0-2) with 23 shots, including 13 on frame. Coming into the game, the Green Wave’s highly regarded defense had given up just four goals all season. “We (did a good job with) runs, sought balls, finishing, really everything,” said Elizabethtown junior forward Beau Bouthilette, who recorded a goal and an assist. “It took the whole team.” After four shots on goal in the first 12½ minutes, the Panthers broke through with 27:05 left in the first half as junior Zack Frank one-touched the ball into the right side of the net on a cross from junior midfielder Adam Porter. “We played Bullitt East (on Tuesday) and we got really frustrated and we were really impatient, so we spent a lot of time on being patient,” said Elizabethtown coach Jon Parsons, whose squad beat Bullitt East, 2-0. “We let our offense click, controlled the ball, and I thought we did a really good job. We relaxed and played our style of type of game.” The Panthers punched one more into the net before halftime as senior forward Jacob Bartelt took a pass from Bouthilette and tapped it past the goalkeeper to give Elizabethtown a 2-0 lead with 2:41 remaining in the half. “I think we came out a little shell-shocked early on. We didn’t really respond to the speed and the quickness of E’town,” Meade County coach Matt Pollock said. “We were able to hold a little bit of our control and not get too far behind in the first half.” But if the Green Wave thought they were still in the game at halftime, it only took 100 seconds for the glimmer of hope to be taken away in the second half. Less than 2 minutes into the period, Link found a wide open Bouthilette on the back door, and Bouthilette fired in an easy goal to give Elizabethtown a 3-0 lead. The Panthers’ final goal came with 13:14 remaining as junior Logan Roberts one-touched a pass from Frank into the left side of the net. “(Meade County) is a really good defensive team, so it’s really good for everyone to get this win,” Bouthilette said. It’s a big confidence booster.” For the Green Wave, however, it is an eye-opener. After starting the season 3-0, Meade County has gone 0-2-1 with back-to-back district losses to North Hardin and Elizabethtown. “Reality sets in after a game like this,” Pollock said. “You know where you stand after a game like this.” Senior goalkeeper Jordan Compton recorded nine saves for Meade County, while Elizabethtown junior Daniel Rothwell had one save as the Panthers posted their fourth shut out of the season. Greg Crews can be reached at 505-1754