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Soccer Pats keep rolling; shut out Mercer 4-0

STANFORD — Senior Trey Cummins and freshman Kaegan Robertson struck for a pair of goals in the 11th and 12th minute of play Tuesday night to set the Lincoln County boys soccer team on course for its seventh win of the season.

Cummins added a second goal in the first half and Calvin Randall scored a second-half penalty kick while goalkeeper Carter Tillett remained unscored upon as the soccer Patriots kept their undefeated record intact with a 4-0 shutout of visiting Mercer County.

The win, which improved Lincoln to 7-0-2, marked the second 4-0 shutout of the season for the soccer Pats (Aug. 19 against South Laurel) and the second straight time that a freshman has scored for the Lincoln varsity (Jansen McAninch, 3-1 win at Somerset).

“Still undefeated. Happy about that,” Lincoln coach Lewis Cummins said. “7-0-2. I think that’s one of the better starts ever, especially after nine games. I thought the boys played really well tonight – as a whole. Not just one player played well, but everybody did.”

Cummins said the Mercer win was especially pleasing considering the state of the team.

“We were coming off several that have been injured and sick,” he said. “The last game (Somerset win) we had four out – four starters. They were back tonight. Not full strength, but we’re getting closer.”

Trey Cummins caught Mercer keeper Aiden West out of position on his first goal. The soccer Patriot midfielder zig-zagged his way into goal from midfield, dribbling to the left, to the right, back to the left, and right before finally centering in front of the net and powering in his shot to get Lincoln on the scoreboard, 1-0, with 29:47 on the clock.

Just over a minute later, with 28:28 showing, Robertson upped the Lincoln lead to 2-0. A shot on goal by senior Hawk Randall was deflected out of goal but Robertson was there for the follow-through shot past West.

Lincoln held to the 2-0 lead until the waning seconds of the first half. Trey Cummins tallied with 22.2 seconds showing, booting in a shot from the right side of goal. The shot hit off the goalpost before falling back into the net.

Lincoln, which outshot Mercer 22-12 with 12 shots on goal in the first half, struggled to get back in goal in the second half. The final goal would not come off a game-play shot on goal but rather a penalty kick shot.

Lincoln earned the PK after West, Mercer’s keeper, was whistled for a foul in the goalie box after grabbing Trey Cummins and not letting him go. Calvin Randall, a senior, powered in the PK shot with just 1:09 to play for the 4-0 final.

Coach Cummins said Lincoln stayed more on defense the second half, limiting scoring opportunities.

“The first half I thought we did a better job of keeping the ball on our end. We didn’t push it as much in the second half. We just stood back a little bit more,” he said.

Tillett, a senior, recorded seven saves in goal for Lincoln. West had 10 goalie saves for Mercer.

Mercer fell to 4-2 in Tuesday’s 12th Region matchup.

“They are always solid, always good,” coach Cummins said of Mercer’s Titans. “They made us work for everything tonight. We knew that they would. They’re a good team and it’s a good win anytime you beat them.”

Lincoln will take on another regional foe today, hosting West Jessamine at 8 p.m.

It was last year’s 2-1 shootout win over West in the 12th Region Soccer Tournament and subsequent 2-1 loss to eventual region champ Southwestern that made Lewis Cummins realize the potential of the 2019 squad.

“We really did feel it would be a strong team,” he said. “We felt after last year’s team that we had a chance to compete. To compete for district. And, if we can make it to region, we can compete with anyone. We felt that way because we only lost three seniors, so we had a good corps of kids coming back. And our group of seniors have been playing since they were freshmen, since day 1. They’re excited about the season. We’re excited. We just have to keep healthy.”