Carroll beats Logan in soccer for first time ever

Sep. 28—It was a matchup of a highly ranked small-school team featuring two state record book players going up against a tradition-rich big-school program.

The Class A, No. 6-ranked Carroll soccer continued to make history Tuesday as the Cougars took down Logansport on the Berries' home field with a 2-0 victory.

It was the Cougars' (13-2) first-ever win over the Berries (3-10) in soccer.

Owen Duff, who is also a basketball star at Carroll, scored both of the Cougars' goals to continue his rise in the state record book. The senior forward now has 103 goals for his career, good enough for ninth most in state history.

His first cousin, fellow senior Noah Falkenberg, is already etched in the state record book as the all-time assists leader with 82. He also has 45 goals for his career. He has a state-best 24 assists to go with 14 goals this season.

Duff struck first with 22:28 left in the first half on an assist by sophomore Eli Falkenberg. Three minutes later Duff struck again on an assist by Landon Brovont to give the Cougars a 2-0 lead which would they would hold for the rest of the game.

Carroll coach Dave Falkenberg said it was a big win for his team.

"Last year we tied them for the first time ever and this year we beat them for the first time ever. I think we were 0-11 or so before that," he said. "Obviously Logansport, record aside, they are always a good team. They play fast, they are on you, they play physical, they knock you off the ball. Obviously that's a great lead in to what next week will bring with sectionals."

Carroll's star players played well. Duff looked like the most athletic player on the field in scoring his two goals and Noah Falkenberg also did his job well.

"I thought he definitely controlled the midfield very strongly tonight, played a lot bigger role controlling the midfield, got a lot more physical tonight which was good to see," coach Falkenberg said of his oldest son.

The Cougars host Wabash to conclude the regular season Thursday. They host a sectional next week, with a possible showdown against No. 4 Faith Christian looming next Wednesday. Carroll is a defending sectional champion and Faith Christian handed the Cougars one of their two losses this season.

"Obviously they're the favorite and they've got high hopes and obviously we do too," coach Falkenberg said. "Obviously you've got to show up for 80 minutes, it's obviously win or go home starting with our first game Tuesday against Delphi."

Logansport coach Mike Turner is a Carroll grad himself. But he's been the Berries' coach for years now and he was not happy with how his team played Tuesday.

"I was disappointed because we gave up two bad goals because those weren't great goals. I warned them about they play a lot of long balls. They play four attackers, six defenders, that's it, they play long balls. I told them the only thing we have to worry about with them is the kids who throw the ball from the sideline to the goal and they did, and we defended that fabulous. But we didn't defend the long balls. We didn't take care of the space between our midfielders," Turner said.

One of the things that perturbed the Logansport coach about the loss was that his team had 10 days in between games to rest and prepare, so there were no excuses for what he thought was a subpar effort.

"We had a whole week off last week. You can ask every one of them and I just did, it was the best week of practice we've had all year. We didn't have games, we got healthy. I asked them what happened because we worked on communication and organization and we looked great all last week," Turner said.

"I was very disappointed in this because we went there last year and tied them 4-4 and we were winning and again we gave up a couple of bad goals. We gave up two early bad goals here and we barely had a shot on them in the first half," he continued.

"We couldn't possess, we were disconnected everywhere and I'm at a loss. I told them all I'm not angry, I'm not mad, I'm disappointed. We had a full week — which most teams don't get — to heal and get better and be ready for sectionals. And to come here in a home game and just look so flat, I think we had two shots in the first half and maybe three in the second. Other than that — that was honest shots — we couldn't possess the ball, we were nervous, it was no rotations or no cover, no balance, it was terrible. I am so disappointed in what we did today. It was anything other than what we can do. We can do so much better."

The Berries often have four or five freshmen on the field. Freshman goalkeeper Dylan Hamm did a good job of limiting the damage to two goals. But the Berries didn't get much offense going. Carroll junior goalie Cohen Miller had six saves which included a couple of nice one-handed deflections to post a clean sheet.

"It was pretty much a shutdown," Turner said. "I'm not happy that we lost in the way that we did. It'd be different if we played to our abilities, we weren't even close. We didn't even threaten them on the backside.

"They're a good team but I have a lot of talented players. Young, doesn't matter. We have skill and we've been putting it together pretty decent. We've taken our knocks, this is not one where we put anything together. They have a couple really good goal scorers and they're tall, they're big and I knew how they scored. They like long balls and long throws, and we're short. I told the keeper, 'hey, play the ball early, come out and play the ball.' He did his job on those, he really did. The second goal he and the defender didn't communicate and that's all we worked on the last week and he stopped, he hesitated, and as soon as he stops it's going to be a goal. It's just bad communication and there was no excuse for that.

"I just know that our program is better than what we showed today."

The Berries host Northwestern for senior night Thursday. They drew Harrison at 7 p.m. next Tuesday at the Class 3A Lafayette Jeff Sectional.