PREP SOCCER: Bearcats, down starters, fall to Sparkman, 3-1


Cullman’s Washington Sheffield (21) / Nick Griffin

CULLMAN – The Cullman Bearcats fell to Sparkman 3-1 Tuesday night in Oliver Woodard Stadium in a game that head coach Casey Harbin described as “unconventional.” The ‘Cats had some strange bounces go against them on the field as well as distractions off the field.

“We started with some disciplinary actions, some starters were out due to internal disciplinary reasons so that’s kind of weird for us,” Harbin said. “I didn’t really see much of their second goal. It looked like it would’ve been a routine play that somehow ends up in the back of the net, but the problem was we shut down after that. We stopped playing our style and for the last week we’ve been really good about playing that nice, clean soccer, just moving the ball around the field, and we got taken out of our game because of some of that stuff. We’re getting better so that’s all that matters. Tonight, hopefully, will confirm that when we don’t play our style we can’t win; we can’t win that way.”

Sparkman got out to a 1-0 lead early in the first half, but the ‘Cats were able to hold up on the defensive end until halftime and hold the Senators’ lead to one. The Bearcats struck quickly in the second half when Isaac Rodriguez fired a laser into the back of the net in the 38th minute on a pass from Miguel Tizapa.

Sparkman responded just one minute later with a goal that took a strange bounce to get by Bearcat goalie Jaron Potter and again in the 33rd minute to stretch the Senators’ lead to 3-1. Potter finished the night with four saves.

Cullman got the ball deep into Sparkman territory a few more times and came just inches away from cutting the Senators’ lead twice, but the Bearcats ultimately couldn’t take advantage of their scoring opportunities.

The Bearcats drop to 7-2-2 on the season with a section game coming up Thursday on the road against Brewer. The Bearcats defeated the Patriots 2-0 earlier in the season and with a win Thursday, will clinch a play-off spot.

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