The Pacers rally but fall just short at Lincoln

The Lakeridge boys soccer team knew it had a challenge ahead of it as it took on the defending state champion Lincoln Cardinals in the first round of the playoffs.

The Pacers more than held their own against the Cardinals, rallying on multiple occasions before giving up a pair of second-half goals to fall 3-1.

Lincoln would put the Pacers into an early hole, scoring just six minutes into the game. But Lakeridge proved it could match up against the Cardinals on the road and played them evenly in the opening half.

Lakeridge appeared to come up with the equalizer late in the first half but the goal was disallowed because of contact with the keeper.

The Pacers also nearly scored on a shot from Remy Mederos that was saved nicely by the Lincoln goalie.

The Pacers came out energized in the second half. Lakeridge continued to play with confidence and got on the board just four minutes into the half on a nice shot from Zach Goldstein.

However, Lakeridge's momentum wouldn't last for long.

Lincoln responded almost immediately, capitalizing on a ball that the Pacers struggled to clear and taking a 2-1 lead just three minutes after Lakeridge had tied the score.

Lakeridge continued to find space against the Lincoln defense but had trouble getting off clean shots.

As the Pacers began to press harder later in the game, Lincoln would get some insurance on a header with 10 minutes to play, all but sealing the Pacers' fate.

Lakeridge will graduate seven seniors from this year's team but figures to return one of the more talented and experienced squads in the league next fall, one that it hopes will contend for the league title.

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