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Season ends for Dragon strikers

October 24, 2012 - The season has ended for the Lake Orion High School soccer team, but the team made the final days of their season memorable ones.

The team, which started out slowly with four losses and two ties, finished the season with a bang - making it to the district final and defeating rival Clarkston, 2-1, earlier in the week.

"We won against Clarkston, eliminating them from the districts, in the second round of districts and it was a wild game," said Head Coach Curtis Payment. "We ended up getting a lot of offsides, but we had a lot of chances and so did they. It was probably our best game of the season and we've had a decent years with great wins and bad losses, but the potential has always been there."

Clarkston played a fast game, forcing Lake Orion to play a strategy that clogged the center field and forced advancing players to the outside. Clarkston scored first but Lake Orion managed to come back - something Orion had not done in the 2012 season.

Senior Goalie Greg Thelan had a good game and defended well in the final five minutes when Clarkston pounded the Lake Orion goal.

Senior midfielder Russell Reichenbach scored the winning goal on a penalty kick with 15 minutes left to go in the second half and assisted senior forward Allen Karrip with the first goal.

While the team has proven resilient and talented this year, Payment said their biggest strength was their camaraderie.

"These guys are playing so hard for each other and we're playing unselfishly which is a really big strength," he said. "We're strong in the midfield too, but our biggest strength is how tight we are. These recent games have been at 110 percent effort."

The team made it to the final 16 teams in the state championship run.

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