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Boys Soccer: Eagles emerge at top of MCAA

The New Life Academy boys soccer team has emerged as a contender in the Minnesota Christian Athletic Association standings.

The biggest game of the week for the Eagles came in a 2-0 win over Southwest Christian Sept. 13. The Eagles were itching for the rematch after losing to Southwest Christian in the conference championship game last year. Head coach Robb Rupp said the win helped players forget about the loss.

“It was a good game, I thought we did well to control the ball,” Rupp said. “Defensively we did well, we didn’t let them get anything clear (of the back line).”

The MCAA no longer plays a conference championship game, so Rupp said they likely will not see Southwest Christian again this year.

Both of New Life Academy’s goals were scored on penalty kicks by Jack Flavin and Henry George.

Rupp said Thursday’s game against Maranatha/West Lutheran was interesting due to the offensive strategy they saw from their opponents. Maranatha put all of its players in the New Life Academy defensive half of the field. The Eagles fell behind 2-1 early after struggling to pass out of the defensive zone.

“They made it difficult for us to play out of the back,” Rupp said. “We really struggled with the pass because there were so many people in the front half.”

The Eagles eventually found out that they could play balls into the offensive zone, their forwards were fast enough to beat the Maranatha defenders to the net.

New Life Academy led 3-2 at halftime and ended up scoring two more goals in the second half.

Mark Rygh scored two goals for New Life Academy. George, Jacob Nordgren and Evan Atkinson each also scored once.

New Life Academy is 3-0 in MCAA play and is now tied for first with Trinity. The two teams play in the final game of the MCAA season on Oct. 8, which Rupp said could be a good game if both teams continue to win.

Blaze Fugina

Blaze Fugina is the sports editor of the Woodbury and South Washington County Bulletin newspapers. Previously, Blaze worked as a sports editor for the Pierce County Herald and a sports reporter for the Alexandria Echo Press. He graduated from the University of Wisconsin-River Falls in May of 2011. You can follow Blaze on Twitter at @BlazeFugina.

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