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Game report: Lake Zurich 4, Crystal Lake South 3

By Mike Garofola, 09/10/23, 10:00PM CDT


LAKE ZURICH -- There was a stunning goal-scoring display Saturday afternoon at Mel Eide Field in Lake Zurich, where the host Bears and their guests from Crystal Lake South netted
a half dozen, second half quick-fire goals before things finally ended.

Lake Zurich (5-3-0) saw a 2-0 advantage disappear when Nick Prus, and then Ali Ahmed drew Crystal Lake South even. The host Bears responded with two goals within 60 seconds and went on to a 4-3 victory.

"It's been a tough week for us with two-straight losses, (games) that we could have won," said Bears manager Mike Schmitz, whose men lost to Wauconda and Stevenson earlier in the week. “We're looking tired right now, so this was a really good win for us.”

"Two big let-downs cost us today. Lake Zurich punished us both times," said Crystal Lake South manager Brian Allen. “Nonetheless, I was proud of our effort to get ourselves back in the game, and to have a few chances to put another one or two more in before it was over.”

In the early stage of this nonconference affair, Nick Prus got in on Bears keeper Thomas Ciezadlo but was unable to finish his close-range effort.

Lake Zurich senior Anthony Kim bagged the opener in the 7th minute, then watched teammate, Ethan Goldberg score the first of four YouTube-worthy goals in the game to give the home-side a 2-0 advantage in the 50th minute.

Ali Ahmed, easily the Man of the Match for Crystal Lake South (4-3-1, 1-0-0), pried open the hosts’ defense with a marvelous move before playing to Prus for his masterful finish in the 51st minute.

Ten minutes later, Ahmed broke free of two Bears seemingly glued to his shirt to finish from the left side into the far-inside netting.

Seniors Braedon Smith and Jason Paull regained Lake Zurich’s two-goal advantage almost 60 seconds apart. Smith’s goal came after he was allowed to tee-up and smash one home from 20 yards.

Ahmed pulled one last one back 90 seconds later after the two-goal burst with a remarkable 22-yard guided missile, but that’s where the scoreline ended.

"We got an important conference win earlier in the week against Dundee-Crown. It was a game we really wanted,” said Ahmed. “We had our chances against Grayslake Central (a 2-0 loss away loss Sept. 7), and Lake Zurich today, but we didn't finish when we had to."

"Our effort against Dundee-Crown (a 2-0 road win Sept. 5) was really good, but it wasn't quite where it needed to be for our next two games," said “But we're learning a lot from these nonconference games, and I know it will get us ready for Prairie Ridge this Thursday.”

Prairie Ridge (8-0-1, 0-0-0), Dundee-Crown (7-2-0, 0-2-0) and Crystal Lake South figure to be the top contenders for the Fox Valley Conference crown this season.