MKA Cougars Outlast the Livingston Lancers 1-0 in Soccer Battle on Saturday
Saturday, September 29, 2012 • 4:46pm
LIVINGSTON, NJ - On an overcast and drizzly day in Livingston, a talented MKA squad was able to hold back a scrappy Livingston team whose hard work and hustle just wasn’t quite enough.
Before the game, Jordan Raper, the Head Coach of MKA told his heavily favored team not to underestimate Livingston. He told them he wanted them to play with the same intensity that they would have in a game against arch rival Montclair.
From the opening whistle, Livingston pressured the ball and didn’t allow MKA any breathing room in the middle of the field. Livingston’s defense did a great job of containing MKA’s “dynamic duo” up front of Malcolm Dixon and Miles Hackett for almost the entire game. “I knew that I couldn’t dive in and play too aggressive versus forwards with the ability to get around defenders so quickly” said Jesse Levitt, Livingston’s right back.
In the middle of the first half, a through ball was played to Miles Hackett and he took a touch around Livingston’s goalie Sean Hunter. It seemed like it should have been a goal for sure but out of nowhere, Levitt found his way in front of the ball to deny Hackett.
On the offensive end, Livingston didn’t have very many opportunities in the first half and their starting forwards, Tomer Niv and Zach Beckerman, did not get a lot of early action.
In the second half, Niv, Livingston’s captain, had two breakaway opportunities but the speedy MKA defenders were able to get back and not allow a shot. Both goalies, Sean Hunter of Livingston and Matt Lane of MKA, were forced to come off their line multiple times to retrieve through balls. Hunter ended up with 7 saves and Lane had 5. Livingston struggled to challenge Lane with a tough shot all game. The speed and desire of Livingston’s center back Zac Panzer resulted in a goal scoring opportunity for Livingston as he nearly went coast to coast with the ball after making a tackle.
With about 15 minutes remaining and the score still tied at 0-0, Malcolm Dixon timed a bouncing ball perfectly and chipped it over goalie Sean Hunter’s head. As the ball traveled towards the goal, Daniel Kaltman, Livingston’s left back, gave a last second effort to save the ball from going in; however, he was too late. In the final 10 minutes Livingston fought desperately to control the game as they had multiple chances to put the ball in the back of the net but none were successful.
The victory moves MKA to a record of (8-1-0) for the season while Livingston drops to (1-5-1).
Coach Raper told TheAlternativePress.com, “the game might have been closer than most people expected, but I knew that Coach Rubinetti would have Livingston fired up and ready to play.”