Franklin Springs, GA – The Crusaders started their second winning streak of the season as they bested the Lions of Emmanuel College 24 to 8 on Saturday afternoon. North Greenville is starting their second conference push with today’s game against the Lions. The Crusaders scored early and often in the contest as the team, as a whole, nearly shot 50 percent on the afternoon. Multiple Crusaders notched goals, but the senior attackman combo of Chris Carpenter and Ethan Landreth led the way with an astounding 8 combine goals. On the defensive side of the ball Omar Lopez (Freshman) and Nate Fischer (Freshman) stood out as the duo picked up contested ground balls and played stout on-ball defense.
The Crusaders came out of the gate hot scoring the first three goals of the game; on their first possession Carpenter took an assist from Landreth and netted his first of the afternoon. The Crusaders did an outstanding job moving the ball around the perimeter and finding the open man that Emmanuel gave up. Fletcher Steveson (Junior) scored the second goal of the game on a right-to-left split down the alley; Steveson has proven to be an outstanding shooter for the Crusaders this season and he proved it with an absolute missile landing in the top right corner. Carpenter got on the board once again as he scored off the assist from Chris Wieckhorst (Junior) at the 11:09 mark to bring the game to a quick 3 – 0 score. After a Lion goal, Alex Proly (Senior) and Austin Zumbado (Junior) both netted assisted goals one on a cut down from the top of the box and the other off a skip pass and high-to-low shot. Landreth scored his first goal of the afternoon late in the quarter off an assist from Proly that excited the bench and all of the Crusader fans in Franklin Springs.
The second quarter was all North Greenville as the Lions failed to score in the period. The Crusader offense dominated the time of possession and the combine efforts of Zeth Sutton (Junior), Jacob Motter (Senior), Jake Able (Sophomore), and Lopez gave the Lion offense fits. The freshman sensation Thomas Cecere scored a minute into the quarter off an assist from Brendan Sullivan (Sophomore) to destroy any momentum Emmanuel had coming off a last second goal in the first quarter. Sullivan again found the open man a few minutes later as he hit Carpenter on the backside. Derrick Shealy (Sophomore) got in on the scoring with an absolute rocket of a shot that found the top left corner along with Landreth who scored the tenth goal of the game for the Crusaders only 23 minutes into the contest. After Landreth scored Austin Dixon (Junior) scored three consecutive goals that gave the Crusaders a ten-goal lead over Emmanuel. Dixon would add another goal later on in the quarter but not before dishing out an assist to Kenny Wessels (Junior) off of a hard ride. The Crusaders finished the quarter with nine goals and nine assists.
Coming out in the second half the Crusaders had an 11-goal lead over the Lions and looked to keep their foot on the gas. The teams traded two goals apiece in the third quarter (Crusader goals both scored by Landreth) and saw the fourth quarter as an opportunity to make a move. North Greenville achieved their goal of continuing their game plan by scoring four of the first five goals in the fourth quarter. Carpenter, Wessels, Zumbado, Nolan Drop (Freshman), and Matt Miller (Junior) all netted a goal in the final quarter of the game, while Dixon added a pair to his total. As the offense possessed the ball for the majority of the game the Crusader defense played hard-nosed and stout when the ball did come down on their end of the field. Freshman goalie Cameron Myer commanded from the net and led the Crusaders to seven caused turnovers on the day. Myer finished with 5 saves on the afternoon coming up big with three door step saves. Lopez and Fischer came up big in the game as both players did their jobs and made the plays they needed to. Loepz in particular played excellent on ball defense denying the Lions any chance of scoring inside by taking his man high and wide from behind the net and toward the side line when he was above the cage. Fischer came up with two huge plays for the Crusaders as he picked up a contested ground ball and caused a huge turnover on the crease in the second half.
Individually, the Crusaders had multiple players that stood out, but the senior attackman combo of Chris Carpenter and Ethan Landreth shined bright as the two shot efficiently and lethally. Austin Zumbado and Kenny Wessels were the other two multiple goal scorers for the Crusaders on the afternoon. The Crusaders finished the game with 22 of 24 goals assisted made in part by Alex Proly (5), Brendan Sullivan (3), and Matt Miller (3).
The Crusaders will now head back out on the road for another Conference Carolina bout with Lees-McRae next Wednesday, April 10th and then return home to Tigerville to host Chowan University on Saturday, April 13th. That game is set to face-off at 1 pm.