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BOYS SOCCER: Lutheran Northwest earns shutout over Oakland Christian WITH VIDEO

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Soccer - Boys - 9/14/2013 

Auburn Hills Oakland Christian 0
Rochester Hills Lutheran Northwest 2
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AUBURN HILLS – The Rochester Hills Lutheran Northwest Crusaders picked up a 2-0 victory in boys soccer Saturday over the host Auburn Hills Oakland Christian Lancers.

The Crusaders struck early in this one when Ontario McDonald pounced on a loose ball and fired it into the net to make it 1-0 just 6:52 into the game. Matt Coleman scored on a similar play in the second half, and that would be all the offense that the Crusaders would need.

Lutheran Northwest dominated the first half behind swarming midfield effort that effectively cut off Oakland Christian’s strikers from the ball. Led by defensive midfielder Chris Phillips, the Crusaders controlled the ball in the first half and were rewarded for it with good chances.

“That’s the key to our game,” Crusaders head coach Mike Miller said. “We’ve got to out work the other team, especially at midfield, and we did that today. Really, we’ve been doing it a lot this year.”

Lutheran Northwest nearly went into halftime up two goals, but Oakland Christian goalkeeper Stuart Sutherland made a diving stop on a penalty shot with less than 12 minutes to play in the half.

The Lancers would come out strong in the second half, creating some chances and getting the offense going. But a workmanlike effort from Eric Drews and the rest of the Crusader defenders proved to be the difference as they held firm against the pressure, and goalkeeper Solomon Spangler did the rest, making seven saves to record the shut out.

“We changed to a different formation in the second half. We got some chances, but we just couldn’t put it away,” Oakland Christian head coach Dave Anderson said.

The win was an important one for the Crusaders (4-4-1 overall, 1-3-1 MIAC) which coach Mike Miller hopes will be a building block for his team going forward.

“We told the kids after the game, that when they talk on TV and radio about learning how to win, well that’s what we did today. We’ve had a couple other games this year where the emotions got high and we didn’t finish. Today, we finished, and that’s a really good sign for us,” Miller said. “It’s a tough, tough league. This year, it seems a lot of the teams are on an even talent level and playing level, and we’re hoping to build on this,” he added.

Rochester Hills Lutheran Northwest will try to continue their winning ways on Tuesday when they travel to Bloomfield Hills Roeper.

Oakland Christian falls to 2-2-1 overall and 1-2-1 in MIAC play ahead of next Tuesday’s game against Ann Arbor Greenhills.

“Right now it’s just a lot of regrouping,” Oakland Christian head coach Dave Anderson said. “We’ll take the weekend to think about things, Monday come for film session, and then get ready Tuesday for another conference game. And it’ll have to be another win in order to pursue for the conference championship.”

Last Updated: 9/14/2013 4:54:15 PM EST

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