Frankfort — Lebanon boys’ soccer coach Ryan Tucker only needed to give a one-word answer when asked the main reason for his Tigers’ 5-1 Sagamore Athletic Conference loss to Frankfort on Tuesday.
Frankfort center forward Evan Giebel made his mark under the lights at the Frankfort High School soccer field, earning a hat trick while assisting on the two other Hot Dog goals in the victory.
Both of Giebel’s assists were on Frankfort’s (8-0, 3-0 SAC) first two goals and came off long throw-ins from the touchline. In the ninth minute, it was Diego Trenado who nailed a free header from inside the six-yard box for a 1-0 lead. And just six minutes later, Giebel’s long throw-in was initially headed away by a Lebanon player, but Frankfort’s Omar Santos got his foot on the ball and kicked it into the net to make it 2-0.
“I’ll say it again and again. Giebel. He’s a pretty good player,” Tucker said. “We do the exact same thing so you’d think we’d know how to defend it. But when you leave a guy unmarked in the six you got to be ball-side so you can get to the ball first, and we weren’t first to it so that’s what happens.”
Giebel said his long throw-ins are basically corner kicks coming from the sideline.
“I just try to place it in the middle or second post where we can get our heads on it, or get our heads on it and play it back in the middle,” Giebel said.
Giebel would then go on to score the Hot Dogs’ final three goals. Nine minutes before halftime, Giebel drew a penalty in the box on a Lebanon player and went left with his penalty kick for a 3-0 lead.
The score stayed that way until there were nine minutes left in the match. A goal kick by Gus Montes bounced all the way through Lebanon’s defense and was chased down by Giebel, who didn’t miss on his 1-on-1 with goalkeeper Jonas Gustavson for a 4-0 lead.
Just four minutes later, Giebel would again draw a penalty, going left again with the PK to catch Gustavson wrong-footed for a 5-0 advantage.
Lebanon supporters claimed that Giebel flopped on both instances, but Giebel didn’t see it that way.
“I’m just beating the guys down the flank and I try to cut back and their leg is out,” Giebel said. “If their leg’s out, it’s a foul.”
It’s the third-straight year Frankfort has defeated Lebanon.
“It’s very nice to beat Lebanon,” Giebel said. “It’s sweet. It leaves a sweet taste in your mouth.”
Lebanon (6-3-1) did salvage a goal four minutes from time, when Will Mock used his left foot to knock home a free kick from about 25 yards out and to the right of the box. Mock went far post and put the shot past a diving Montes.
Lebanon registered nine total shots, and Gustavson was credited for 10 saves.
“It was just a poor first half on our part,” Tucker said. “We’re under the gun 3-nil down and we can’t play the same way in the second half. They’re the better team, but I don’t know about 5-1.
“We’ve been talking to the guys for weeks to put shots on goal. If you don’t put shots on goal you can’t score – make the keeper make a save. I don’t know how many shots on goal we had, but it wasn’t a whole lot. We sprayed them all over the place.”
It’s a big week ahead for Frankfort. Along with playing another conference game against Crawfordsville on Thursday, the Hot Dogs play Harrison on Saturday. Harrison has handed Frankfort three of its four losses the past two years.
“We just got to go out and play our game,” said Frankfort head coach Olegario Martinez. “That’s it. If it happens, it happens. If it doesn’t, it doesn’t. It’s a game we’ve got to play. I’m happy for the kids, but at the end of the day it’s just a game.”