By Josh Holland
For the Forsyth County News
The first half of the Lambert/South Forsyth boys soccer matchup on Friday night had all the look of a duel between defending state finalists, at least on the scoreboard.
Hayden Fontana had opened the scoring for the Longhorns, but Bryant Linares had then equalized for South on a free kick to make it 1-1. With 14 minutes remaining in the half, Lambert forward Yeonsung Lee made a cut to the right inside the box to make just enough room to fire a shot into the back of the net.
The goal gave the Longhorns a 2-1 lead and proved crucial to Lambert’s win. Thomas Powers made it three goals for Lambert in the second half as they cruised to a 3-1 win over their south Forsyth rivals.
Lambert had an edge from the start as they created the majority of chances and were able to string long series of passes together. Fontana scored just six minutes in by firing a shot right at South keeper, Carlos Guerrero. The ball went above his head and through his hands for the first goal of the game.
South got back on level terms when they were awarded a free kick from the left corner of the box. Lambert keeper Chris Smith was caught out by the attempt on goal, and Bryant Linares was able to sneak it in with 29 minutes left in the first half.
Guerrero tried to keep South in the game for as long as possible with several saves, including one with an outstretched leg in a one-on-one situation two minutes after South’s goal.
Eventually, South’s defense succumbed to the Lambert attack, and that’s when Lee scored to make it 2-1 before the half.
“I thought we played a great first half,” Lambert head coach Chris Wilson said. “We gave up the goal on a free kick so not really in the run of play.”
After halftime Lambert continued to push for more with Julian Cuervo testing Guerrero from distance, but only finding the field goal uprights. With 32 minutes left in the game Thomas Powers bought the Longhorns an insurance goal. His initial shot was saved but Guerrero failed to hold on, and Powers easily tapped it in.
“I think we had over 23 shots tonight, and that might be the most shots we’ve had all season in one game.” Wilson said post-game.
This all-around dominant performance helped Lambert continue their undefeated season, with the Longhorns moving to 11-0 and 7-0 in Region 5-7A, while South’s record went to 5-4-1 on the season and 4-3 in the region.
Lambert girls 10, South Forsyth 0
The last time these two sides faced each other, the Longhorns dominated and were only one goal from forcing a win by mercy rule. On Friday night at home Aja Celka ended the game six minutes early with a goal from distance that sailed over South’s keeper Anna Montgomery and off the crossbar to make the score 10-0.
Lambert dominated right away, scoring through Brooke Schuyler just four minutes in off a long throw in. In the next few minutes South managed to maintain some possession and looked as if they had the potential to equalize.
Lambert squashed their hopes by taking advantage of South players forward and doubling their lead through Madison Haugen. This was her first goal of four, including a strong solo run that completed her hat trick.
The Longhorns brought their undefeated record to 12-0, 6-0, while South fell to 3-8 on the season and 1-6 in the region.