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Friday, May 6, 2016

Going Four-th

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Chase Howser celebrates after the second of his four goals in Tuesday's Class 4-3-2-1A Southeast Regional Tournament semifinal at Ellis Park. The Tigers defeated Columbus, 4-1, and will host the Regional final Thursday afternoon.
(Kenny Felt/Exclusive to the Tribune)
Chase Hoswer scored all four Tiger goals and the defense made sure a goalkeeper making his first varsity start didn't have much to worry about as Fort Scott High's soccer team defeated Columbus, 4-1, in the semifinal of the Class 4-3-2-1A Southeast Kansas II Regional Tournament at Ellis Park Tuesday evening.

Fort Scott advances to the Regional Final, which will be played Thursday afternoon at Ellis Park. The opponent will be third-seeded Coffeyville (9-5-1) which beat Louisburg, 2-0, Tuesday.

Started in 2000, the Fort Scott soccer program didn't win a playoff match for the first time until last season. But the expectations of the program have risen quickly in the four years Kevin Gray has been on the coaching staff. Now the head coach, Gray said the program is well past just hoping to win a playoff match.

Fort Scott's Tyler Endicott (16) looks to get the ball downfield as Columbus' Devon Wheeler attempts to defend during the first half of play at Ellis Park Tuesday night. Endicott assisted on a goal in the Tigers' 4-1 triumph in a Class 4-3-2-1A Regional playoff match.
(Kenny Felt/Exclusive to the Tribune)
"It shows how much we've improved," Gray said. "We're expected to play for a Regional championship now. That was our expectation going into the season."

Columbus (3-14) was the No. 10 seed in the Southeast Regional -- which was split into two brackets -- but pulled off a 3-2 upset over No. 7 Riverton in a first-round game on Monday. The Tigers (12-5) didn't have much of a problem with the Titans, however, controlling the ball for somewhere in the area of 85 to 90 percent of the time in the first half as Columbus had trouble going into a strong south wind.

The Titans managed to get a few breakaway chances early in the second half but managed to capitalize on only one.

"At times, we lacked possession," Gray said. "But as the game wore on, I thought that we played some of the best possession soccer we played all year."

Howser scored his first goal in the sixth minute of play as Columbus' goalkeeper booted a clearing pass right at him. Howser spun around a defender and scored on a one-on-one opportunity.

Howser's second goal came from an Austin Rogers assist in the 25th minute. That made it 2-0, which was the halftime margin.

Clayton Hixon, playing goal for the injured Brett Allen, was first challenged in the 36th minute but smothered the ball off the foot of Brice Bennett.

Bennett had a breakaway opportunity early in the first half but Hixon made a diving save to his left to deflect the shot away.

"I thought that save he made on the breakaway was the best save I've seen anyone make this year," Gray said. "He's confident and he knows how to play the position."

Aaron Bigando scored for Columbus in the 44th minute to narrow the deficit to 2-1. But just a couple of minutes later, Howser scored goal No. 3 from a pass by Tyler Endicott.

Bennett had another breakaway shot in the 52nd minute but that went wide to the right of goal. The Titans never again had a scoring opportunity that good.

Howser capped the scoring in the 64th minute as he deflected in a Marcus Brennon shot.

Fort Scott's last four-goal game by an individual was by Don Savage, who graduated as Fort Scott's single-season scoring record holder, in an 8-0 win over Riverton on Oct. 3 of last season.

Fort Scott took 22 shots to just six for Columbus. Only 2 of the Titans' shots were directly on goal, so Hixon needed to make only the one save. The Tigers took 12 corner kicks to just 3 for Columbus but were called offside only once.

Thursday's match time was not yet officially set, but it is hoped Coffeyville will agree to a 4 p.m. kickoff.

Team statsColumbusFort Scott
Total Shots622
Shots on goal214
Corner kicks312


C -- Cody Spainhoward (14 shots, 10 saves, 4 goals). FS -- Clayton Hixon (2 shots, 1 save, 1 goal).


FS -- Chase Howser (unassisted), 6th min.

FS -- Howser, 2 (Austin Rogers), 25th min.

C -- Aaron Bigando (Brice Bennett), 44th min.

FS -- Howser, 3 (Tyler Endicott), 46th min.

FS -- Howser, 4 (Marcus Brennon), 64th min.

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