SYCAMORE – Summer is a more laid-back atmosphere than the regular season, but a win against a rival is still a win against a rival – something both the DeKalb and Sycamore boys soccer teams got to experience.
The Barbs beat the Spartans, 4-0, in Sycamore on Tuesday, avenging an earlier loss to the Spartans. And while the summer features more of an emphasis on progression rather than winning, getting a revenge win against a rival still feels good, said DeKalb senior Andrew Leon.
[Photos by Mary Beth Nolan for Shaw Media]
“We were just determined we were going to beat them on their home turf and not give them any chances,” Leon said. “We didn’t give them any chances and just shut them up in the first like five minutes.
“It’s always going to be Sycamore,” he said, “and it’s always going to be that we want to beat them.
The Barbs struck quickly with goals by Leon and Tyler Scarbrough. Isaac Cordova added a first-half goal and Andrew Hammarberg scored late in the second half of the shutout.
DeKalb was coming off a 4-0 showing at a tournament in Moline, and coach Brent McIntosh said he wasn’t sure how his team would respond after a hot, grueling weekend.
“When you look about summer matches, it’s all about performance, and we put a real solid performance out here tonight,” McIntosh said. “We were coming off four games in the heat of Moline and I was a little concerned what our energy level would be like, but I was real pleased with how we came out and put our stamp on the match early.”
Sycamore coach Dave Bachta said the difference between the showing in the last game – a 5-1 win at DeKalb in mid-June – and this one was a “tale of two games” for the Spartans.
“We put different kids in different spots, things like that,” Bachta said. “It’s really just about getting some kids some time, see how they do. But DeKalb was the better team today.”
[Mary Beth Nolan]
Even though it was against a rival, senior Isaac Plagakis said seeing improvement over the course of the summer is the most important thing, and despite the loss he’s still happy with how the summer is progressing for the Spartans.
“It’s kind of like, ‘Hey, it’s summer,’ ” Plagakis said. “We’re starting over and trying to learn how to play with these guys. Some of us haven’t played together before. We’re getting to know each other a little more.
“We’ve had a lot of practices, spent a lot of time together practicing,” he said. “I think we’re getting to know a lot more of each other’s game.”
Sycamore still has three games left this summer, with fall camp slated to start in the first full week of August.
With a large group of seniors and strong summer so far, Bachta said he’s excited for the fall.
“This is a great group,” Bachta said. “I’ve got a great group of seniors and we’re really excited. They’ve been around the program for four years, putting in the time. It’s a large group of seniors. Seniors can be a double-edged sword, but this is a group we’re really looking forward to.”
McIntosh said he doesn’t put much stock into summer wins, but also said picking up victories helps a team learn to win – something he thinks is very important for the young Barbs, which is looking to replace 12 seniors from last year’s team, eight of which were starters.
“That’s what we’re getting done this summer,” McIntosh said. “That will be important for when they really count.”
DeKalb's Mauro Telemantes, right, settles a pass as Sycamore's Miles Kousoulas pursues in the second half of a summer friendly Tuesday July 17 at Sycamore High School.