Soccer

High school boys soccer insider: Dundee-Crown's Sam Lopez is athlete of the week

Sam Lopez
Sam Lopez

ATHLETE OF THE WEEK

Sam Lopez, Dundee-Crown, sr., M

Lopez scored the game-winning goal in overtime against Huntley on Thursday with 36.4 seconds remaining on the clock. The game would have ended in a 0-0 draw if no one scored.

The Chargers struggled to find goals in the Fox Valley Conference opener against a Huntley team looking for its first win. D-C is the defending FVC champion.

“We should have handled it in the first half,” Lopez said of the narrow victory. “We should have taken care of it at first, but not every game is going to be a good one.”

Editor's note: Shaw Media will host its 2019 Most Valuable Athlete Awards Night on June 12 at Northern Illinois University's Convocation Center. All Athletes of the Week are invited to sign up here.

POWER RANKINGS

1. Crystal Lake South (8-0-1, 1-0 FVC): The Gators continue to win, picking up their first FVC victory against Prairie Ridge on Tuesday.

2. Dundee-Crown (5-1-1, 1-0 FVC): The narrow win over Huntley means D-C extends its unbeaten streak to six. The Chargers lost their first game of the season and have not lost since.

3. Hampshire (5-0-1): The Whip-Purs picked up a victory against Sycamore on Thursday and remain unbeaten on the season.

4. Woodstock North (7-0-3, 3-0-1 KRC): The Thunder have won three straight games, and still have not lost this year. They took down Johnsburg, 4-0, on Monday.

5. Woodstock (8-2, 3-1 KRC): Woodstock has won six matches in a row. The Blue Streaks have scored 19 goals in four KRC games, while allowing only two.

NOTEWORTHY

Defense on track: While Huntley remained winless entering play Tuesday, coach Kris Grabner was encouraged by what he saw defensively against D-C. The Red Raiders fended off D-C’s first 15 shots.

“It’s been a little bit of a hole for us,” Grabner said. “We’ve struggled a little bit, and we’ve been working on it. Still giving some opportunities, but I felt like we did a really good job of pushing their attack wide, slowing them down and getting our balance to our defense.”

Goalkeeper Lucas Clemetsen made 15 saves for Huntley.

Working out the kinks: D-C has plenty of time to fix some issues after the near draw against Huntley. The victory came days after a 4-0 win over Hoffman Estates.

"We had a great game at Hoffman the other day, [Coach Rey Vargas] told us we have to play like that now or we’re going to get beat,” junior midfielder Roland Dearborn said. “We just had to really focus and remember how we played the other day and try to recreate it.”

WHAT TO WATCH

Woodstock North at Woodstock, 6 p.m. Wednesday: The crosstown rivals will square off for a second time. North edged Woodstock, 1-0, in the season opener Aug. 21.

Prairie Ridge at Dundee-Crown, 4:30 p.m. Thursday: Prairie Ridge dropped its conference opener Monday and has a tough task ahead against the Chargers.

Jacobs at Hampshire, 4:30 p.m. Tuesday: In three of its four losses, Jacobs (3-4-2) lost by only one goal.

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