The Harrisburg High School soccer team ended in a 1-1 tie with Anna-Jonesboro Tuesday afternoon as the Bulldogs now sit 1-2-1 on the season.
Harrisburg head coach Mike Stewart said because the lack of rains lately most soccer fields have been like playing on concrete, thus both teams had trouble controlling the ball Tuesday.
With both teams trying to make adjustments they held each other scoreless until the 22nd minutes when a through ball pass from Afernee Houston to Carver Gregg up the middle found its way past A-J keeper Steven Wells and into the back of the net to put the Bulldogs on the board first.
The remaining 18 minutes, Anna tried numerous times to penetrate the Dogs' defense, but just could not do it.
Starting the second half with a one goal deficit the Wildcats were hungry for that tying goal and with both teams having few shots on goal it was a defensive game. Anna continued to pound on the Dogs' door and with less than three minutes left Anna's, Noah Fuller, brought the ball down the left middle lane for a break away but HHS sophomore Ryan Cowsert played it a little to aggressively and ended committing a foul in the box. This resulted in penalty kick for the Wildcats, where Senior Enrique Areola was able to place the ball just past Bulldog keeper Jacob Oldani to tie the game.
"The defense played a great game today," Stewart said. "With the leadership
from seniors Chad Barger and Thomas Bucinski, the defense was able hold off several A-J attacks. To lead most of the game and give up the tying goal through a PK is very frustrating, on the other hand to play that well at Anna is very encouraging for this young ball team."
Oldani had eight saves on the day in goal, while the Bulldogs put up nine shots. Dylan T. Butler, Hunter Ragan, and Gregg each had two.
Dylan J. Butler, Luke Horton and Houston each had one, while Houston had an assist.
Harrisburg will host Mt. Carmel Thursday at 4:30 p.m. at Michael Herrin Field.