HARRODSBURG – A weakened Frankfort boys soccer team made the trip south on U.S. 127 to Anderson-Dean Community Park in Mercer County to take on the Burgin Bulldogs Tuesday night and came away with an 8-0 victory.
The Panther squad consisted of only 12 players following the untimely loss of several players due to injuries and illnesses.
Frankfort seemed in control throughout the first half, successfully moving the ball down the field with high-percentage passing. The Panther’s finishing was a problem, however, as only 2-of-19 first-half shots were successful.
In the 12th minute of play, after a pass from senior midfielder James Murphy, sophomore winger Travis Skelton connected for the game’s first goal. Six minutes later, it was Murphy’s turn to drive toward the goal and hit a shot past the Burgin keeper.
In the second half, the Panthers continued their ball possession and increased their shot production, this time with greater success.
In the ninth minute, Murphy sent a pass into the box as junior striker Allen Redmon ran on to drive a hard shot into the goal.
Eight minutes later, sophomore midfielder Bailey Spade cracked a long shot from outside the 18-yard box into the Burgin goal. Next it was Spade’s turn to feed a through ball to Murphy, who scored his second goal of the night.
The scene was repeated in the 40th minute of the match as Spade had his second assist and Murphy his third goal of the evening.
But, Murphy, the second leading scorer in the state, wasn’t finished.
Senior defender Matthew Carpenter made a crossing pass to Murphy in the 37th minute, which Murphy sent into the goal. This was followed by Murphy’s fifth goal, an unassisted shot in the final two minutes of play.
“I was impressed by the way we controlled the tempo of the game,” FHS coach Sherrill Smith said. “Our numbers were down with injury or sickness but we played a possession game from the start.
“Bailey Spade did a nice job of setting up our offense from the halfback position and had some very nice shots as well,” he said. “Michael Reid was very effective tonight in goal and did an excellent job with roll outs and punts from his keeper position. This also helped support our high percentage of possession of the ball.
“James Murphy continues his solid hold as one of the top goal scorers in the state with a hat trick and two,” he said. “He now has 30 goals on the season.
“Matt (Carpenter), Cody (Hall), David (Perry) and Quincy (Penn) did an excellent job in the back shutting down any opportunity that Burgin presented.”
Frankfort varsity’s next match is at Anderson County on Thursday night at 7, preceded by a JV match at 5. The JV team also has a match tonight against Henry Clay at 5:30 at the Panther Athletic Complex.