Panthers open tourney with win


Cade Ziegler of Fairbanks prepares to launch the ball toward the goal. The Panthers won their Division III tournament opener by a 2-1 count at Grove City Christian. (Photo submitted)

The Fairbanks Panther boys soccer team opened Division III tournament action on Thursday with a 2-1 win over Grove City Christian.
As the 13th seed, Fairbanks was the underdog to the No. 6 Eagles.
“We played a tough regular-season schedule with nearly all of our non-league games being against Division I and II opponents,” said FHS coach Matt Humphrey. “As a result, perhaps our 6-8-2 record was deceiving to Grove City Christian.”
Fairbanks (7-8-2) broke the scoring ice during the 17th minute of the contest.
Jeremy Ziegler launched a throw-in and the attempt at clearing the ball by the Eagles instead fell near Cade Ziegler.
He tapped the ball with his right foot and then buried the goal with his left.
Cade Ziegler added the Panthers’ second goal in the 47th minute with a laser free kick from 25 yards away.
Grove City Christian tallied its lone goal late in the game.
The Eagles were afforded a free kick of their own which fell to the ground in the box.
The scramble favored the Eagles as they scored the goal.
“This was a great win to start a tourney run,” said Humphrey. “Much of this season has been about preparing for the post-season and we will see if we can carry this momentum into the next game.“
The Panthers will play at No. 8 Tree of Life on Monday at 7 p.m.

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