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Condly boots Thorpe over Tribe

Jim Thorpe boys’ soccer coach Mike Dudak says his team needs to shoot smarter.

“You can’t kick three shots on goal from the same spot 30 yards out that the keeper saves,” he said. “You have to change the distances and the angles.”

Give credit to Olympians’ senior captain Chris Condly for doing just that.

Condly scored the first two goals of the game, one from far out and the other from close range to lead Jim Thorpe to a 2-1 Schuylkill League win over Lehighton Monday.

After a scoreless first half which saw the Indians force the attack early and the Olympians (2-0) come on strong late, Condly found himself alone with the ball from 30 yards out on the left side. He kicked the ball high over the outstretched arms of Tribe (0-2) goalkeeper Kaleb May and into the back of the net at 19:11 for a 1-0 lead.

Five minutes later, during a logjam in front of Lehighton’s goal, a header off a maroon and white jersey was headed again by Condly into the left corner of the goal for a 2-0 Olympian lead.

“Chris is a real solid, experienced player,” said Dudak. “He’s the engine and the energy that drives our team.”

In the first half, Thorpe’s sophomore keeper Jacob Geiser made two outstanding saves. At the 30-minute mark, he stopped Mason Marchesault on a point-blank shot from five yards away.

Then, Gieser stopped a hot shot from Carter Strauss that bounced off his hands before he dove on top of the ball with several Tribe attackers closing in.

“He comes out to stop a lot of possible shots,” said Tribe coach Dave Yob. “We won’t see many other goalkeepers do that.”

In the second half, both teams played with a physical edge, jockeying for position to get better chances for shots on goal. There were players piled up from scrambles in front of both goal creases.

“We played hard and didn’t quit,” said Yob. “I’m pleased with our effort. We knocked on the door several times. We just didn’t get a few more balls in the net.”

The Indians closed to within one score with just over three minutes to go.

Strauss sped down the left side with the ball and buried his shot into the far-right corner. Thorpe held on to preserve the one-goal victory.

STATS ... Jim Thorpe finished with 13 shots on goal, four of which were saved by Tribe keeper Kaleb May. Lehighton managed six shots with five saves by Geiser. Jim Thorpe had eight corners to two for Lehighton.

SLOW GO ... Dudak said his team usually plays fast on turf, but in the first 10 minutes of the game, the Olympians couldn’t find their rhythm to turn on the jets.

BLOWIN’ IN THE WIND ... The gusty wind affected both teams’ ability to connect with passes in the air. Ground level kicks were much more accurate.

SUPER SOPH ... Geiser has picked up where he left off last year as a freshman, leading his team to a league title and a district semifinal berth. He’s allowed just one goal in two games this season, both Jim Thorpe wins.

Timothy Dudak of Jim Thorpe (29) controls the ball as Lehighton's Carter Strauss defends. RON GOWER/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS