CAK has ups, downs in 3 Invitational games

KNOXVILLE --- Saturday morning proved to be an exercise in frustration for the Christian Academy of Knoxville boys soccer team.

For starters, the Warriors had to answer an early wake-up call April 7 to face Morristown West in their final match of the Bearden Invitational on an extremely unseasonably cold early-April day.

Despite outshooting the Trojans, the Warriors came up on the short end of a 1-0 decision at BHS’s Bill Young Field.

Morristown West (8-1) only mustered one shot on goal in the first half, but that one accounted for all of the offense in the match as Jose Gonzalez scored in the 17th minute.

The Warriors (3-4-1) outshot the Trojans 6-3 in the match, as CAK missed on several opportunities that hit the goalpost, went wide or sailed high.

Warriors head coach Jon Day obviously was disappointed, but kept things in perspective.

“What I take away is that we’ve play three games in less than 40 hours,” he said. “We had our chances.

“We played three games here and we had two losses and a lot of people will see a lot of negatives in two losses,” Day added. “But this is a tournament sport and we’ll learn from this and we’ll get better.”

Morristown West head coach Paul Holland said CAK “is a good team. They’re always going to make a run at you and they’re never going to quit.

“They’re big. They’re strong and they’re fast,” he added.

The Warriors, 2016 Class AA state champion, captured its lone victory of the tournament when it shut out Science Hill 3-0, as the two squads played through some intermittent showers.

Having won nine state championships in its storied program history, CAK, opened tournament play with a 4-1 loss to Hendersonville Thursday, April 5.

“We came out and we played well for the first 20 minutes and then they flipped it on us,” Day said. “They caught us in some compromising situations and we made some silly mistakes.”

The Warriors were sharper after halftime.

CAK got its lone goal from Baker Benfield in the 65th minute of the match.

Benfield said the competition at Bearden Invitational “will only make us better and it will get us ready to play in our district.”

“They [the Trojans] are a good team and we had our chances,” he added.

“We played three good teams and we lost two games.”