CLYDE — Port Clinton frequently makes difficult look easy.
Freshmen Marcus Hogan, Jon Brown and Hunter Frye each took a turn at it Tuesday as the league-champion Redskins remained unbeaten in the Sandusky Bay Conference with a 5-1 victory over Clyde.
“They impress me at practices and games,” Port Clinton coach Paco Romero said. “They’re familiar with each other, they see angles and they can play any position.
“That gives them the opportunity to see different types of balls. Nothing’s new — they’ve seen it.”
Hogan directed a deft through-pass over a defender’s foot to set Nathan Stubblefield up for a goal in the first half.
“It was a perfect chip ball over the defender,” Stubblefield said. “Tremendous placement. It made it easy for me to finish.”
Brown tallied two straight goals for a 4-0 advantage at the half. The second came as the goalkeeper gave him no place to shoot from a tough angle, but Brown looped a little touch to the far post.
“You have to play so often that it’s second nature,” Brown said of the execution. “I play year-round so when I’m in that situation it’s same-old, same-old.”
You’ll have that mentality when you establish a single-season program record with 37 goals as Brown has this year. Brown, who was second-team all-Ohio and SBC player of the year last season, surpassed Kyle Millinger’s mark of 34.
“It really doesn’t matter,” said Brown, who doesn’t elaborate much when the topic is himself. “It will matter when I’m 30 telling my kids stories. Right now, I’m just happy to keep winning.”
Everybody watching was surprised when Brown barely sent a 1-on-1 chance with the goaltender scooting past the far post on the ground and then hit the post with another shot a short time later. When you are as prolific as Brown, you almost expect him to succeed every time.
“I’m not surprised but a little frustrated,” Brown said. “I like putting them in and I’m used to putting them in, so when I miss I get down a bit, but get the next one.”
Frye capped the scoring with the inside of his right foot from the keeper’s right as he put a shot into the far side of the net. It was almost as though he shot the ball while running past it.
Freshman Josh Brown, who is already a staple in the lineup, opened the scoring for Port Clinton.
“We had a chance to get a lot of people in,” Romero said overall. “We had a chance to see some of the kids for next year and we’re excited about them, too.”
For now, the Redskins earned their second consecutive conference crown and third all-time this season.
“It’s just great to experience,” Stubblefield said. “It’s my first one. It’s a tremendous experience and it’s been fun.
“It’s our chemistry together — we grew up in the program, we’re friends and we play good together.”