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Defense, ball control push Howell Central to state berth


Francis Howell Central used a splendid combination of staunch defense and ball control offense to produce a pair of first half goals. The Spartans made that scoring stand up as they defeated Marquette 2-1 Saturday (Nov. 8) in a Class 4 quarterfinal at Francis Howell Central.

Howell Central (22-4-1) advances to play Lee’s Summit in the semifinal round on Friday at Blue Springs South at  6 p.m.

During most of he first half, the Spartans held the ball in Mustangs end of the field getting shots and just missing on scoring chances.

Howell Central finally got a chance to pay of just about midway through the first half. Off a long free-kick, Spartans midfielder Colton Brown redirected the ball into the goal and the Spartans were on the board first.

The Spartans added another goal thanks to a corner kick. With 5:05 left in the first half, Justin Stinson’s corner kick raced through the Marquette goal box and Andrew Keller banged it in for a 2-0 edge.

As Howell Central got the controlling lead, Marquette was not able to pressure the Spartans much as the Howell Central back four defenders did not allow many rushes and kept control of the neutral zone of the field.

Marquette was finally able to get a break 14 minutes into the second half as the Mustangs got awarded a penalty kick.

Jacob Krupp blasted the penalty kick past Howell Central netminder Chase Webert making it 2-1.

Marquette saw its season stopped at 17-8.

Howell Central, who was 0-3 in the quarterfinals prior to Saturday, will be making its first trip to the Class 4 Tournament next weekend.







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