On the face of it, a 0 – 0 tie, and we have had several this season, seems entirely unsatisfying. Early in the season when I described a 0 – 0 tie to Athletic Director Mike Doherty as “a good game” he just shook his head and replied that a 2 – 2 tie might be a good game, but not 0 – 0. OK, fine, but today’s match against Proctor really was great. It was the third time we had seen them this fall, and both teams showed dramatic improvement. The teams controlled the ball, completed pinpoint passes, and had spectacular scoring chances. Nuri Lesbec made some beautiful corner kicks and blasted a shot from about 30’ out that just skimmed over the crossbar. Liam McKewan and Jon Li each had great chances, Cody and Jack Lavallee worked very well together in the offensive third of the field, Tryder Kulbacki and Trong Phan were tough in the midfield, and the defense, lead by Kyle Young’s booming foot, held fast. But KUA’s number one star of the game was Goalkeeper Max van Dijk, who simply wouldn’t let Proctor get the ball by him. He ran out several times to the top of the box to grab the ball before the oncoming striker could get there, he stopped two shots from point blank range, and he made one breathtaking save that his teammates described as a hockey stop where he sprawled out on the field and blocked the ball with his trailing leg. The Proctor keeper was strong too, and perhaps the top play of the game came during a wild scramble in the front of the Proctor net. Their keeper made two quick saves then went down, but a Proctor defender standing literally on the goal line jumped up and headed away a shot that was destined for the top corner. A genuinely impressive play, even if was made by the other team. Two well-matched teams playing hard. Plenty of excitement, but not plenty of goals. Here’s hoping the Wildcats can score early and often in each of their three remaining games.
Founded in 1813, Kimball Union Academy is one of the oldest private boarding high schools in New Hampshire and the country. KUA blends the best of the New England boarding tradition with an innovative, modern educational program for a diverse group of day and boarding students from across the country and around the world. Located in Meriden, New Hampshire in the heart of the Upper Valley, Kimball Union is minutes from Dartmouth College and has direct access to Boston and New York.