NORTHEAST GLENDALE — Whether at even strength or down one player, the Flintridge Prep boys’ soccer team generated plenty of quality scoring opportunities Thursday afternoon during its Prep League match against Webb.
Flintridge Prep Coach Mathew Bowden couldn’t find fault in the effort after watching his players get turned aside with excellent saves by Webb goalkeeper Ian Harbison in the Rebels’ 2-0 home loss at the Glendale Sports Complex.
“We just couldn’t get the goal at the right time,” said Bowden, whose team fell to 7-5-1, 3-2 in league and split the two-match season series with Webb (7-7, 2-3). “We beat them, 5-1, last week and we probably didn’t have as many great scoring chances in that game as we had today.
“We needed to get a goal before halftime [Thursday] and we couldn’t get it. We played well and had our chances.”
Flintridge Prep wasn’t only stopped by Harbison, who finished with 14 saves, including nine in the second half.
The Rebels also lost sophomore defender/midfielder Daniel Enzminger when he was given a red card for an elbow to the face of Webb’s Luke Lee in the 48th minute. Enzminger’s ejection also meant the Rebels were forced to play the game’s final 32 minutes short-handed.
“The red card was a big factor,” Bowden said. “It looked worse than it really was and it was a more of an accident.”
Enzminger said he was stunned that he had been removed from the match, which featured a goal in the second minute by Daniel Cristostomo that gave the Gauls a 1-0 advantage.
“We were going for the ball and I jumped to get it and we collided,” said Enzminger, who must now serve an automatic one-match suspension because of the infraction. “I was the one left standing and I was very surprised to get the red card.
“It was an unfortunate situation.”
With Enzminger reduced to being a spectator, the Rebels pressed for the tying goal.
Harbison foiled Robby Carroll inside the box in the 58th minute and then stopped a penalty shot with three minutes left by Cole Rademacher.
Cristostomo then closed out the scoring on a penalty shot in the 59th minute.
Harbison also made three tough saves in the first half, the best coming in the 38th minute. Zady Al-Marayati lofted a 35-yard shot that Harbison leaped for at the last second and punched past the outside of the left post.
“I thought we played pretty even in the first half,” Bowden said. “The important thing for us is to not get down.
“We still have a lot of big games left. We now have to learn from this and keep on improving.”