Kirtland overcame a rough offensive night and a much-improved Berkshire squad to pull out a 3-1 win over the host Badgers on Monday.
Jeremy Lunka, Joey Zovko, and Danny Venorsky all scored goals in the win, but the Hornets missed a penalty kick, hit the crossbar on another shot and failed to finish off a breakaway attempt.
“By not putting away our chances we kept them in the game and gave them more confidence to keep competing,” said Kirtland coach John Valentic. “Nevertheless, they were good at closing the space down quickly and not letting us get comfortable in possession.”
Zovko, who is now tied with Lunka for the team lead with eight goals, knows the Hornets had their opportunities to break the game open.
“The keeper made some nice saves along with some mess ups on our part hitting the post and crossbar,” he said. “Having to adjust to a field that we weren’t very used to kind of threw us off a bit, not that it’s an excuse for not being able to execute, but we couldn’t find our groove when it came to the back of the net.”
Kyle Work, Marko Cubela, and Ante Bevanda all recorded assists in the win and Tyler Banyasz had one save.
The Hornets improved to 7-5-1 on the year with three regular season games left to be played.
Zovko hopes this game serves as a bit of a wakeup call to rally the Hornets down the stretch.
“We take it knowing we have to come out stronger in our last three games of the regular season along with having another back-to-back game this week,” he said. “We are very focused from this point that we need to leave everything we have in us out on the field until the final whistle of the game.”
Kirtland travels to Cuyahoga Heights on Tuesday.