McPHERSON – While it may be considered a down year for both the McPherson and Buhler high school boys soccer teams, the rivalry match continues to be an intense battle.
The Bullpups, however, ran away with a 3-1 win over the Crusaders on Tuesday evening. The win pushes McPherson over .500 at 7-6, while Buhler falls to 3-7-2 on the season.
"We showed some pretty good composure," McPherson head coach Chris Adrian said after the game. "I thought our seniors Cody (Achilles) and Logan (Ediger) just kept things calm."
The Bullpups played aggressively on offense as they out-shot the Crusaders 14-2 on goal. Eleven of those goals were in the first half.
Buhler goalkeeper Jax Fredrick collected 11 saves for the Crusaders. Buhler head coach Bransyn Felty credited the Bullpups for a strong first half as he tried to figure out how to slow down McPherson's offense.
"They came out strong," Felty said. "We held them a little bit. They gained more advantage but I thought our guys battled back."
Cody Achilles was all over the place for the Bullpups as he produced two goals and an assist. The first goal came early on in the first half at the 30-minute mark.
His second goal was a penalty kick in the second half. That goal gave McPherson the lead after Buhler's Cole Darling tied the game up at the start of the second half.
Adrian explained Achilles' performance and what's different about his game.
"You saw Cody, how he changed the way he was playing," Adrian said. "He stopped running and just starting finding the ball and let the guy around him make those runs, so I thought he had a really smart game."
The Bullpups will take on Hutchinson High School on the road this Thursday at 6:30 p.m.
Buhler travels to Salina to take on Salina Central High School at 6:15 p.m.