Kirk nets two in Dragons’ season-opening win

GLOVERSVILLE – The Gloversville Dragons got their 2013 season off on the right foot.

Powered by a pair of first-half goals from junior forward Thomas Kirk, Gloversville defeated Hudson Falls 2-0 to claim the Foothills Council victory.

“I am pleased,” Gloversville coach Paul Ligon said. “A win is big for this group. I have some juniors who did not play on varsity last year so even though we have a lot of seniors, there are a lot of first-time starters.”

The Dragons (1-0 overall, 1-0 Foothills) dominated the play early, getting the ball forward to Kirk on the front line.

After narrowly missing on a pair of early attempts, Kirk received a through ball from Juan Dador, beat a defender before slotting the ball into the side netting for a 1-0 lead 11:43 into the match.

Just over eight minutes later, Kirk collected his second score of the game.

Josh Young sent a throw in to Kirk who turned on goal and put the ball in the back of the net for a 2-0 edge with 19:49 left in the opening half.

The Tigers (0-1 overall, 0-1 Foothills) created an opportunity with 17 minutes remaining in the opening half.

Jerald Kilmartin moved the ball along the right sideline before firing a long shot toward goal that slipped past Gloversville goalkeeper Kyle Royal. However, defender Spencer Satterlee scrambled to the goal and cleared the ball off the line to help the Dragons hold a 2-0 halftime advantage.

The Tigers put pressure on the Gloversville defense through the opening minutes of the second half but could not capitalize on the Dragons sluggish start.

Gloversville regained its composure in the midfield and found the passing combinations its developed in the first half but could not break through for another score.

“We played a good first 15 minutes of the game. We came out with a lot of intensity and wanted to compete,” Ligon said. “The second half we just kicked and ran without really any purpose on the ball. We had them on the ropes early in the second half and didn’t put it away and that kept them in the game. We got a little lackluster, so to speak.”

For the match, Gloversville out shot Hudson Falls 15-2 and held a 6-1 advantage in corner kicks.

Royal picked up the shut out with one save, while his counterpart Kyle Rich collected nine saves.

Gloversville will take to its home pitch again Friday night when defending league champion Broadalbin-Perth comes to play at 7 p.m.

“Today was our first real contest other than our scrimmages and I thought they played ok,” Ligon said. “Obviously, we have some things to work on. Friday night is going to be a big early test for us to evaluate what we really need to work on.”