The Hannibal boys soccer team scored three unanswered goals to hand Marshall its first NCMC loss since 2015.
All streaks, good and bad, eventually must come to an end.
The Hannibal boys soccer team wanted to make sure it played a part in ending Marshall’s North Central Missouri Conference winning streak Saturday afternoon at Veterans Sports Complex.
The Pirates scored three unanswered goals over the final 50 minutes to score a 3-1 win, ending the Owls' conference dominance. Marshall won its previous 19 NCMC matches dating back to October 17, 2015 — a 3-2 defeat to Hannibal.
“We have had today’s match circled on the calendar since the beginning of the season,” Hannibal coach Eric Hill said. “This was a big win against obviously a solid team who has won the conference the last couple years.”
The win moves the Pirates to 10-3 overall and 6-0 inside league play.
“We still have to go through everyone once more including going down to their (Marshall’s) place, but with the win today we put ourselves in a really good position,” Hill said.
Marshall struck first. Manuel Garcia found the back of the net with 19:31 left in the first half on a busted play.
Hannibal keeper Gabe Falconer kept the Pirates in the match with a pair of diving saves after the initial goal.
Then the Pirates offense came alive.
Keaton Bartz tossed in a long throw-in and found Cory Allensworth from about 10 yards out. Allensworth got his head on the ball and it trickled through the Owls keeper for the equalizer with just under 10 minutes left in the half.
Hill mentioned the Pirates caught a break on the play.
“It was really an own goal,” the Pirates coach said of the tying goal. “But I thought they were fortunate on their goal as well so I guess you can say we kind of traded mistakes in the first half.”
Either way, the goal set the tone for the rest of the match for the hosts.
The Pirates failed to score the rest of the half, but the tide still shifted.
“If you can go into the half even that is a heck of a lot better than knowing you still have to fight all the way back from being down,” Hill said. “We definitely needed that goal in the first half.”
The Pirates started the second half on the attack and finally broke through in the 50th minute.
Allensworth passed up on an open shot and passed to Kabren Robinson from the left corner of the 18. The junior midfielder did not miss in giving the Pirates a 2-1 lead.
“I was wide open but I saw Kabren coming up from my left and I knew he would have the perfect shot,” Allensworth said of his game-winning assist. “That goal was huge because I know anytime we give up a second-half goal we get down. We could see they were down after we scored.”
The Pirates added an insurance goal with just under 11 minutes left in the match. Bartz again found a teammate in front of the goal. This time it was Colton Brown who found the back of the net.
“Keaton was really on with his passing today,” Hill said. “He did a great job of putting his throws right in the middle of the mix all day.”
The Pirates have now won four straight — all NCMC matches — after a 2-1 loss in double overtime in their own tournament two weekends ago.
“With the early-season losses we knew we had to change something,” Allensworth noted. “I think the last few matches we have just played with more effort and more intensity. That’s how we played today and it shows we can play with anyone.”