Cross county clash ends in draw |

Cross county clash ends in draw

There’s no doubt that there is a rivalry between the Bear River and Nevada Union soccer squads.

But after Thursday’s cross county clash, which ended in a 0-0 tie, it was pretty clear the rivalry is one based in respect. Many players on both sides of the field are former foes ” and even teammates ” through club soccer programs.

After the teams exchanged handshakes following the match, Nevada Union’s Jacob Kirishian met Bear River’s Jonathan Boone and Tony Taylor with hugs at midfield.

“I know most of these kids from my metro team,” Kirishian said. “Or I at least know a lot of their names. It makes it a friendly match.”

But the competition remained fierce. Throughout the battle each time fought just to maintain possession of the ball, let alone find a way to get it in the goal. The matchup made Bear River coach Dave Molina believe the teams were as well matched as he thought heading into the game.

“It was funny,” Molina said. “They beat Marysville 6-1 and we beat Marysville 6-0. We beat Forest Lake 3-0 and they beat Forest Lake 3-0. And out here … we were both even Steven.

“I thought they were better than us in the first half and we played better in the second.”

Both goalkeepers, Nevada Union’s Zach Peach and Bear River’s Boone, pitched shutouts. But it was Boone who had the most action, thanks largely to head-over-heels throw ins from Nevada Union junior Christian Grapel.

Consistently finding their target at high velocity, Grapel’s flip throws gave Nevada Union several shots at the net.

“It’s lethal,” said NU coach Ben Hajduk. “Christian spent some time as a gymnast early on. It’s something he’s developed on his own and worked on. And it’s awesome to have it.

“It turns any ball in front of the half into a possible goal-scoring situation.”

But on Thursday, each time such situations arose, Bear River’s Boone answered the call on the opposite end.

“I definitely got some action,” Boone said. “It was good to know some of those (Nevada Union) guys and what they do. Like Shawn (Lee), who did the bicycle kick … well, I actually didn’t know he could do that. But with Shawn you don’t know what to expect.

“But I’m proud of our guys. We did great.”

But the Bruins weren’t finished. Due to some form of miscommunication, a team from West Campus ” scheduled to play at Bear River this coming Monday ” also showed up to play the Bruins. And after the accidental trip had been made Thursday, Molina decided to make it worthwhile for West Campus.

The two teams squared off immediately after Nevada Union left the field. West Campus won 1-0.

“I’ve got to give our kids credit for playing a doubleheader,” Molina said. “It kind of shows the depth we have on our team, paying two games like that and playing them well.”

The Bruins (3-1-1) hosts Placer Sept. 24.

Nevada Union (4-3-2) opens Sierra Foothill League action at home against Roseville Tuesday.

To contact Sports Editor Brian Hamilton, e-mail or call 477-4240.

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