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Free Kicks: Showdown looms for Greencastle, Waynesboro boys

It's still early in the season, but a showdown is brewing for boys soccer in the Mid Penn Colonial Division.

As of Monday night, both Greencastle-Antrim and Waynesboro were sitting atop the standings at 4-0, and they meet Thursday night at G-A's Kaley Field.

But they both have tests Tuesday. The Blue Devils play rival Shippensburg and the Indians must take on Boiling Springs (3-1-1).

Greencastle (5-1) lost its first game of the season Saturday, but it wasn't unexpected. G-A invited last year's PIAA runner-up, Susquehannock, to play in its tournament and the result was a 4-0 verdict for the Warriors. That came after the Devils pulled out a 3-2 win over Susquehanna Twp. in overtime in the first game.

"It was good competition against two real good teams," Greencastle coach Scott Gelsinger said. "It was good for us to play against teams like that, because you can see where you stand and what you need to work on.

"Susquehannock was physical and skilled, and I think they are starting eight seniors, so those guys all played in the state final last year."

Waynesboro (6-1-1) has played some decent competition outside of the league, too, falling to Central York, beating Spring Grove and tying Chambersburg last Saturday.

What the game against the Trojans showed 'Boro coach Brian Stum was that he needs help in the midfield. Chambersburg punished the Indians with possession in the center of the field.

Waynesboro was dangerous when it got the ball into their attacking end, and the defense held strong except for twice when a Trojan forward was let unmarked.

"Our biggest issue is we've been struggling when we're up against a good midfield," Stum said.

He's been trying different players in hopes that something clicks. Against Chambersburg he moved Derek Buhrman, the area's leading scorer until Mikell McGee's eight-goal rampage for Fannett-Metal on Monday, back to midfield.

SOCCER DAY AT JB: James Buchanan's new soccer complex will have a lot of activity on Saturday, with a tripleheader.

At 4 p.m., the Lady Rockets will host Waynesboro in a Mid Penn Colonial Division tilt, immediately followed by the Rockets vs. Indians boys game.

Then at approximately 7:30, an alumni soccer game will be held, with both boys and girls playing.

"It's going to be a whole day of soccer," JB boys coach Randy Jarrett said. "We even have some of the old JB coaches coming back, and it going to be co-ed for the first time. We hope to do this every few years."

Jarrett said players from as far back as 2001 have signed up to play and he expects more than 30 players to show up.

CLOSE CALLS: If you're watching McConnellsburg's boys soccer team this year, expect a close game.

In five games so far, the Spartans have gone into overtime three times and the other games were 1-0 and 2-0.