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updated: 8/27/2013 11:19 PM

Depth lifts Neuqua past St. Charles North

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  • Neuqua Valley's Kersey Dickerson and St. Charles North's Adam Hoffman collide while fighting for the ball in the first half on Tuesday, August 27.

       Neuqua Valley's Kersey Dickerson and St. Charles North's Adam Hoffman collide while fighting for the ball in the first half on Tuesday, August 27.
    Laura Stoecker | Staff Photographer

  • Neuqua Valley's Nick Castelvecchi fights off St. Charles North's Phillip LeGare in the first half on Tuesday, August 27.

       Neuqua Valley's Nick Castelvecchi fights off St. Charles North's Phillip LeGare in the first half on Tuesday, August 27.
    Laura Stoecker | Staff Photographer

  • St. Charles North's Ryan Olson heads the ball against Neuqua Valley's Kas Baladi on Tuesday in St. Charles.

       St. Charles North's Ryan Olson heads the ball against Neuqua Valley's Kas Baladi on Tuesday in St. Charles.
    Laura Stoecker | Staff Photographer

  • Neuqua Valley's Jake Loncar leaps onto the back of St. Charles North's Jack Fries after deflecting the ball in the first half on Tuesday, August 27.

       Neuqua Valley's Jake Loncar leaps onto the back of St. Charles North's Jack Fries after deflecting the ball in the first half on Tuesday, August 27.
    Laura Stoecker | Staff Photographer

  • St. Charles North's Phillip LeGare and Neuqua Valley's Nick Castelvecchi wrestle for possession of the ball in the first half on Tuesday, August 27.

       St. Charles North's Phillip LeGare and Neuqua Valley's Nick Castelvecchi wrestle for possession of the ball in the first half on Tuesday, August 27.
    Laura Stoecker | Staff Photographer

  • Neuqua Valley's Nick Castelvecchi and St. Charles North's Phillip LeGare fight for possession of the ball in the first half on Tuesday, August 27.

       Neuqua Valley's Nick Castelvecchi and St. Charles North's Phillip LeGare fight for possession of the ball in the first half on Tuesday, August 27.
    Laura Stoecker | Staff Photographer

  • St. Charles North's Phillip LeGare collides with Neuqua Valley goal keeper Andrew Fadanelli as he reaches up to catch a ball headed for the goal in the first half on Tuesday, August 27. Neuqua Valley's Kersey Dickerson on left.

       St. Charles North's Phillip LeGare collides with Neuqua Valley goal keeper Andrew Fadanelli as he reaches up to catch a ball headed for the goal in the first half on Tuesday, August 27. Neuqua Valley's Kersey Dickerson on left.
    Laura Stoecker | Staff Photographer

  • Neuqua Valley's Kersey Dickerson redirects the ball with a high kick with St. Charles North's Adam Hoffman on his back in the first half on Tuesday, August 27.

       Neuqua Valley's Kersey Dickerson redirects the ball with a high kick with St. Charles North's Adam Hoffman on his back in the first half on Tuesday, August 27.
    Laura Stoecker | Staff Photographer

 
By Chris Walker
Daily Herald Correspondent

Big, experienced players don't always score the goals -- sometimes it's clutch newcomers that ink up the score pad.

Matt Bayna, Austin Flatt and Brandon Perez would be lucky (with shirts soaking wet) to combine and eclipse 400 pounds on a scale, but the three non-starters proved to be huge on Tuesday.

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They worked together to help Neuqua Valley score the lone goal in the first half in a 3-1 victory over St. Charles North in St. Charles in the season opener for both squads.

"Those guys came in during those last 10 minutes and really brought some energy," Wildcats coach Skip Begley said. "The thing about high school soccer is if you play 12 kids solely you're not going to have those other kids in the long haul when you get to October."

St. Charles North (0-1) had controlled the tempo for most of the first half and had plenty of opportunities to jump ahead or score the equalizer before intermission before Flatt scored.

"I thought we did some really nice things there, but then we make a mistake and it gets compounded," North Stars coach Eric Willson said. "It was good to see that start on the offensive end, and I like how we defended at times, but we have to work harder."

Neuqua Valley (1-0) added some insurance nearly midway through the second half when Jake Loncar was able to get in front of a defender and then dribble his way toward an opening for his first goal of the season.

"My coach said even if you get six scoring opportunities and just put one away you're still doing your job," Loncar said. "I keep that in mind every time I get the ball and make sure I get the ball to someone or take something myself. Just as long as I get off a good shot I'm happy."

Loncar's tally would prove to be huge as minutes later Phillip Legare would slice that lead in half with his goal with 18:35 remaining.

Perhaps momentum was shifting on the host's side?

If so, it didn't last for long as Reed Kurtenbach connected off a corner kick with 13:11 remaining to give the Wildcats a comfortable 3-1 advantage.

"We made some mistakes but we know what we're trying to work toward," Willson said. "If we keep them upbeat and positive, we know that all of this is a process and that good things can happen down the road."

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