The Elizabethtown Area High School boys soccer team has faced plenty of ups and downs as of late. That was evidenced in the Bears’ recent slate of games, which featured a win and a loss against Section Two opponents. With one game left in the regular season, they’ll have to come up with a victory to secure a playoff spot.
The team had its last away game of the regular season at Ephrata on Thursday, Oct. 3. The Bears didn’t waste much time, scoring exactly four minutes in off a long shot from senior Adam Evans. The rest of the first half was uneventful for both teams, with only a handful of shots on goal.
The Mounts made a stronger push offensively in the second half, sending a number of shots toward senior Elizabethtown goalkeeper J.J. Oberholtzer. The latter came up big, however, finishing with 6 saves, and the Bears defense shut Ephrata down the rest of the way to get the 1-0 victory. Sophomore Braeden Sorensen had 5 saves in the net for the Mounts.
Fortunes were reversed at home against Lampeter-Strasburg on Monday, Oct. 7. The Pioneers were the ones to strike early this time, with junior Luke Kelly crossing in a goal just under three minutes into the game. Elizabethtown clamped down defensively from there though, allowing just two shots on goal the rest of the way, both stopped by Oberholtzer.
However, the Bears offense was unable to get in gear. The unit ended up with 5 shots on goal but solid play from junior L-S goalie Colin Reinacher (5 saves) prevented any makes. Thus, the Pioneers emerged with a 1-0 win of their own.
Now at 8-6-1 on the season, Elizabethtown is set for its final regular-season game at home against Manheim Central on Thursday, Oct. 10. It’s do or die time for the Bears; they’re 13th in the Class 4A power ratings for District 3 as of Tuesday, Oct. 8. A win will clinch them a spot, and a loss could potentially knock them out of the playoff chase. If L-S falls to Ephrata the same night, Elizabethtown could also end up with a berth in the Lancaster-Lebanon League playoffs.