DIXON – The season is less than a week old, but the Dixon boys soccer team is ready for something new.
That new thing would be putting a goal on the board. Rochelle extended the Dukes' scoreless streak to four games after posting a 3-0 victory on Tuesday at A.C. Bowers Field.
Dixon (0-3-1) had numerous golden opportunities, but was unable to push one across against the Hubs (3-2).
"They're getting really, really close," senior forward Scott Heath said, "and it's starting to bug us as a team. I think as soon as we get one finally in, I think the floodgates will open, and the season will turn around."
Five minutes into the game, Heath had a 1-on-1 opportunity against Rochelle goalie Cole Dickinson. The shot eluded Dickinson's grasp, but slid by the left side of the net.
Unfortunately for Heath, it was just the beginning. He had a pair of close-in chances batted away by Dickinson in the first half, and also had a goal that actually found the back of the net denied by an offsides penalty.
Dixon was in the midst of celebrating the goal when the officials got together and decided to disallow it.
Rochelle, meanwhile, attempted just two shots in the first half, but one of them found the net. Senior midfielder Curtis Kinne lodged himself in front of the Dixon net, received a nifty pass from teammate Miguel Casillas, and Dukes goalie Brandon Jagitsch had no chance on the play.
Rochelle made it 2-0 5 minutes into the second half on a goal from Casillas.
Midway through the second half, Dixon had another great opportunity to score. Heath barely missed, again to the left. Less than a minute later, Kinne scored on a breakaway off Jagitsch's fingertips to up the margin to 3-0.
"There's a saying in soccer, 'If you don't score, they score,'" Dixon coach Mahmoud Etemadi said. "While we were creating opportunities and we were missing good chances, on the counter-attack they scored. That's how soccer is. That's what intelligent players do. They capitalize on minimal chances, and that's what Rochelle did.
"They played smart, and we did not capitalize on our chances."
Kinne now has six assists and four goals in five games, and it's a matter of being in the right place at the right time.
"We had guys sending me a lot of through-balls," Kinne said, "and I just basically used my speed. That's the way we got it. Our guys in the corner, they put it there every time. That's basically all we've got to do."
Star of the game: Curtis Kinne, Rochelle, 2 goals, 1 assist
Key performer: Cole Dickinson, Rochelle, 8 saves
Up next: Dixon at Sycamore, 4:30 p.m. today