Chillicothe HS Soccer Hornets, Corbin Keep Streaking in Shootout Win at Hannibal

Albertson save in final round of post-OT penalty kicks seals 12th CHS ‘W’ in row

As reported to C-T

HANNIBAL — In one of their most-impressive performances of the season from various perspectives, the Chillicothe (Mo.) HS soccer Hornets advanced their run of consecutive victories to an even dozen Monday evening with a 3-2 “shootout” decision over a strong Hannibal Pirates team.

With his team in front 3-2 after four rounds of the 5-rounds “shootout,” senior goalkeeper Jaxon Albertson stared down the final shooter and made the only save of the “shootout” to close out the win without the Hornets needing to take their last attempt.

“An incredible performance against a very talented Hannibal team,” a generally-low-key Tim Cunningham, long-time CHS head coach, lauded his squad, which now owns a 14-3 record.

“We were challenged both physically and mentally throughout the match. Our guys rose to the occasion and played at a very high level.”

The Hornets trailed 1-0 in the first half and led 2-1 in the second, both courtesy of senior Chace Corbin, who continues to accentuate the “attack” in his attacking midfielder position title. The pair of tallies – the equalizer off a Ben Cueni-Smith setup only a couple of minutes after Hannibal had begun the scoring in the 24th minute and the lead goal, assisted by Drake Cosgrove, in the 56th of the 80 regulation minutes.

The first of Corbin’s netted shots extended his personal streak of consecutive matches with at least one goal to a program-record-extending 11. His second of the evening raised his season total to 24, now only two behind leader Cosgrove. He moved past early teens standout Steven Cooper, CHS’ career goals leader, into sixth on the single-season list.

Corbin and Cosgrove have combined for 50 goals (of the team’s 56) and 23 assists with still three regular-season matches and district tournament play (at home) remaining.

After the Hornets edged ahead of the strong Pirates crew, HHS’ Drew Porter leveled the score with a shot in the 69th minute, Cunningham reports.

While there were multiple threats in the last 10-plus minutes of regulation time and the two 10-minutes overtime segments, neither goalkeeper allowed his net to be penetrated, leading to not only Chillicothe’s first overtime action of the season, but also its first “shootout.”

In the post-OT, one-on-one showdowns to decide the non-conference match, Hannibal shot first in each round.

After a Pirate scored to start things, Corbin answered for CHS. The second Pirate shooter, however, put his attempt wide, Cunningham reports, opening the door for CHS.

Back Nate King capitalized and Chillicothe had a 2-1 lead after two rounds.

Hannibal then had another miss – its shot banging off a goalpost, according to the CHS coach, allowing Cosgrove to step to the spot and drill home his attempt, making it a near-commanding 3-1 Hornets margin.

In a do-or-die spot, Hannibal beat Albertson to stay alive and, with a chance to end it, CHS defensive mid Wyatt Brandsgaard shot wide to his left.

That kept Hannibal alive, but only long enough for the CHS netminder to stone the last HHS shooter and close the door on the match.

Not only did Albertson have a role in denying the Pirates on three of their five “shootout” attempts, he had thwarted them 17 times in 19 shots on goal during the 100 minutes of standard play.

His return from a brief early-season injury coincided with the start of the Hornets’ now-12-games winning streak. Although Hannibal got two past him Monday, he’d posted back-to-back shutouts in four of the five preceding matches. His personal won-lost record when in net this fall now is 13-2.

Chillicothe’s soccer Hornets will try for a 13th-straight win and 15th triumph of the season at home Tuesday (Oct. 19) with Kirksville the opponent. CHS has taken the Tigers’ measure 2-1 on a neutral pitch and 2-0 at Kirksville already this season.