Short-handed Colts hold off Liberty in Big 10 play

The Inter-Mountain photo by Tony Baisi Philip Barbour’s Caleb Shipley weaves his way around the Liberty defense during Tuesday’s Big 10 Conference match at George Byrer Field at BC Bank Park.

PHILIPPI — Despite playing a man down after a player disqualification call at the 21:07 mark of the first half, Philip Barbour was able to hold off Liberty, 5-3, Tuesday on George Byrer Field at BC Bank Park.

The Colts received goals from five different players in winning the Big 10 Conference encounter.

With a 2-0 lead to protect, Colt keeper Ethan Knight battled to keep the ensuing penalty kick just outside the boundary. PB then grabbed a 3-1 advantage before the Mountaineers cut into the deficit to trail 4-2 at halftime.

“I thought our effort was good at times, but that’s the first time the boys have ever faced playing a man down for that long of a period,” first-year Colts coach Will Gregory said. “When you’re playing a man down, everything gets heightened. You have to do all the little simple things faster and better, you have to be in the space before the ball comes, and make it easier so you don’t exert all your energy running around and chasing.

“Our older guys did a good job stepping up,” added Gregory. “We made some adjustments at halftime, and I thought the boys did a good job of executing that. A lot of boys finished the ball tonight, which was exciting to see. We’ve been doing all the things well except not finishing.

“To see five different guys finish tonight, we’re on the right path.”

Tanner Faulkiner connected from 13 yards out and a Caleb Shipley assist to Noah Ward gave PB a 2-0 lead early in the first.

Ward then assisted Grant Dadisman with a corner kick assist to make it 3-0.

Chance Howell’s goal cut the lead to 3-1 before Dakota Taylor dribbled in from 25 yards out and finished from close range to extend the Colts’ lead back to 4-1.

Chris Atkins scored for the visitors before the break to make it 4-2.

Wyatt Rock pulled Liberty to within 4-3 early in the second frame.

With under 10 minutes to go, Ethan Gregory poked a shot off the cross bar and past the goal line to give the Colts 5-3 breathing room for the remainder of the contest.

Philip Barbour punched out over 20 shots, with several taken from the attacking third as the Colts dominated time of possession.

PB lined up four corner kick attempts to just one by the visitors.

Knight recorded three saves in the first half for PB, while Cody Cooper gloved three stops in the second. Liberty keeper Nick Jackson recorded seven saves.

Philip Barbour is slated to visit North Marion at 5:30 p.m. Thursday for another Big 10 contest.