It’s not quite a rivalry yet, but it’s getting closer.
Buhler’s young soccer team still can’t solve McPherson High, but it did play the Bullpups closer than previous meetings here Tuesday.
A couple of late Andric McGill goals broke open a close game as MHS clinched the AVCTL championship with a 4-1 victory.
“It hasn’t been as much of a rivalry on the soccer field I think as some of the other sports because, to be honest, we’ve won the last five games we’ve played against Buhler by quite a bit,” MHS coach Chris Adrian said. “But they played with a lot of spirit out there and a lot of energy, in the first half especially.”
MHS led 2-0 midway through the first half on a pair of Patrick Munsey goals, with assists to Hadley Hageman and Darrius Armstrong.
Buhler did cut the lead to 2-1 right after Munsey’s second goal and the Bullpups missed some chances to make it larger.
“We had so many chances where we got the ball in great position, but just didn’t even get shots off on goal,” Adrian said.
The Crusaders kept a flicker of hope until McGill scored off a Drew Schrader assist midway through the second half. In the closing moments, McGill flashed his wheels as he created a 1-on-1 situation to make the deposit.
Adrian said Armstrong was shifted to a different position and he combines with McGill to give MHS a couple of speedsters going down the lines. “It gives us a different look going into the postseason,” Adrian said.
A player who really caught Adrian’s eye was defender Devin Cape.
“Devin Cape, he was phenomenal today,” Adrian said. “As a defender he doesn’t get a lot of credit, but he won just about every single challenge he went into and played the entire game with the intensity and energy we want everyone one of our players playing with.”
The MHS JVs were a 3-1 winners. Sammie Jaime, Jael Jaime and Trey Hett scored the Bullpup goals.
MHS, 9-4 overall, has a tough game coming up on Thursday at Valley Center. The Bullpups defeated the Hornets earlier this year in the finals of the Maize South Invitational.