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Geibel boys gain first win

| Wednesday, Sept. 17, 2003

After a half-dozen frustrating games to start the season, the Geibel boys soccer team finally had something to smile about as it cruised to a 7-1 home victory over Beth-Center in Section 4-A action.

"They played well," Geibel coach Paul Shenal said. "We played together as a team and we made good decisions."

Both teams came into the game looking for their first win of the season, and the Gators quickly gained the upper hand.

Approximately 10 minutes into the game, the Gators made a strong charge at the Beth-Center (0-7) goal and were rewarded as Brandon Bailey found himself all alone in front of the net. John Labuda made a great pass in front and Bailey simply had to tap it into the vacated cage to give Geibel (1-6) a 1-0 advantage.

Then just a few minutes later Bailey struck again as he drilled a shot past Beth-Center keeper Justin Marks to make it 2-0. Gaining that early lead proved to be a big point in the game.

"That's a big boost when you score often and early," Shenal said.

After Bailey had his fun, it was Andy Labuda's turn to shine. Andy Labuda streaked in front and slipped a low liner into the back of the net for a 3-0 lead before completing the first-half scoring with a shot from in tight to make it 4-0.

The second half was much like the first as Geibel dominated in terms of field position and shots on goal. In the early stages of the second half, Geibel pressed and came up big again as John Merranko raced down the right side and fired in a goal to make it 5-0.

The Bulldogs did have one highlight as Cory Livingood broke the shutout as he scored from the left side midway through the second half to cut his team's deficit to 5-1.

But Geibel closed the game out with two more goals. John Labuda put a little looping shot over the Beth-Center netminder to make it 6-1. Then Kevin Loya ended it out with a goal with about eight minutes remaining.

"It was a total team effort," Paul Shenal said. "They played as a team, just like it is supposed to be played."

John Labuda led the scoring with two goals and an assist while Stephen Shenal figured in the scoring with two assists. Bill Noel and Merranko each added an assist. Geibel outshot Beth-Center 25-6. Geibel goalie Nick Molchan stopped five shots on goal.

The Gators will host Bentworth on Thursday.

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