LUTZ- After waiting about two hours for a Jefferson Dragon squad to finally arrive at Steinbrenner high school due to travel complications, an antsy Warrior team rose to the occasion in a 3-1 non-district victory.
Steinbrenner struck first in Monday’s match with a goal by sophomore midfielder Noah Ruggles who took a free kick off a foul and put it right into a Jefferson player, causing the ball to propel right back toward him giving himself a chance to put it right into the goal with 15:30 remaining of the first half.
“It took a while for us to get in the emotions of it all because we were sitting around for so long but once we did everything else took over,” said Connell.
However Steinbrenner wasn’t finished on offense yet as junior midfielder Josh Collister took a ball from junior midfielder Michael Connell with 19 minutes left of the game into the net for a 2-0 lead.
“We just needed to open up some space tonight and that’s what broke the game open,” said Connell.
But the Dragons attempted to comeback as a goal with 18 minutes left of the game came from a kick from the Dragon’s midfielders took a bad bounce over second half goalie Craig Wyatt allowing junior forward Javier Ramierez to lightly dribble the ball in the net without contention.
But with the game coming to an end with Jefferson putting on the pressure, Connell and company managed to relieve the defense of their workload as they set up the ball for some corners and free kicks. This led to Connell sending a ball right into the middle from the Steinbrenner bench’s side of the field for a ball that would eventually make it’s way in not as a goal from players like senior forward Charlie Ulloa, but as an Jefferson own goal from a cluster of players all fighting for a touch. Steinbrenner went up 3-1 with less than a minute to play. Connell finished with two assists on the night, marking his third assist in two games.
Steinbrenner will play Plant City on the road, Wednesday night at 6 PM.
Written by Evan Abramson/Online Sports Editor