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Landon Shedd’s goal lifts Parkersburg past South, 1-0

Photo by Jay W. Bennett Parkersburg South’s Ayden Willison and Parkersburg High’s Kota Butcher go up for a header during the Big Reds’ 1-0 victory Tuesday evening at Erickson All-Sports Facility.

PARKERSBURG — Landon Shedd found the back of the net with five ticks left in the 69th minute, Aiden Merritt worked a clean slate and visiting Parkersburg nipped Parkersburg South, 1-0, here Tuesday evening at Erickson All-Sports Facility.

Patriot keeper Christian Altizer had stopped 11 shots before he made a diving save on a long laser boot that went from the right hash to the far left post by Tanner Minnite. However, Altizer wasn’t able to grab the ball and Shedd was Johnny-on-the-spot and booted it in with 11:05 left in the match.

“The keeper just hit it down and I got it,” Shedd said. “It was nothing. It was a light goal. That’s a hustle goal. They are a good team.

“I feel like we should’ve beat them by a lot more, though, considering we had so many opportunities but we couldn’t finish them.”

Altizer had a diving stop in the second minute on a Connor Gribble shot and then made a kick save in the third minute on a potential Terrance Wright goal. Brayden Tingler also was turned back in the 10th minute.

The Patriots, now 2-6-1 with a noon match Saturday at John Marshall, tried to get some early pressure on Merritt. A cross by Christian Barton, though, was cleared by Minnite in the fifth minute.

Merritt’s lone first-half save came when Shawn Cross headed a ball toward the goal in the 15th minute. PSHS also couldn’t take advantage of some deep throw-ins during the first half, which included a pair by Dylen White that were both cleared by Sammy McCale, who also was there to thwart a run in the 37th minute that was started by Cross, went to Barton and then on to Tobi Adebulu.

White had a long direct kick in the 59rd minute, but teammate Miciah Jones’ header was off the mark. The only shot on goal of the second half for the hosts came 6 minutes prior by Nicho Roland.

“We played Morgantown last night to a 2-0 game. That was a tough game, too,” admitted Patriot boss Jamie Whitlatch. “Two hard games in a row, but that’s no excuse. This is not the same team from last year at all. These kids are here and know what it’s like to lose and they don’t want to lose.

“Last year it was 8-0. This year it was 1-0. It’s a building process. We’re getting there. It’s coming along and more kids are more involved in playing travel. PHS is always a good program. Today, our home field helped us.”

Parkersburg South’s last best chance at a tally came in the 71st minute, but Adebulu’s shot landed on top of the goal.

Altizer had a diving save in the 30th minute after Big Red Tristen Brogan got the ball to Kota Butcher. Wright also had a shot before the half that was batted away from danger by Altizer, but the Big Reds couldn’t score off Gribble’s corner kick.

“South’s tough. It’s a rivalry game so you expect stuff like this,” noted Big Red head coach Billy Shedd, who got plenty of solid work from senior defenders Riley Smith and Grant Miller. “They came out here and they want to beat us all the time. They are giving everything they’ve got in this game so you got to come out here and match the intensity and everything they have.

“You can’t pass on this field. It’s hard for us to kind of get in our game, but no excuses. They are class. They played good defense and packed it in at the end and made us figure something out.”

PHS will attempt to improve on its 6-1-2 record during Thursday’s match at South Charleston.

Contact Jay Bennett at jbennett@newsandsentinel.com

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