Boys soccer: Kalen Carver’s third straight hat trick paces Morris past La Salle-Peru

Ryker Anderson adds two goals and an assist in 6-1 Morris win

Kalen Carver

MORRIS – It’s been quite a special run for Morris senior Kalen Carver.

Last week he scored three goals in a lopsided win over Rochelle followed by three more goals in his next outing and another healthy Morris victory on Tuesday against Joliet Catholic.

Carver cashed in again with his third hat trick in as many games as he led the Morris-Seneca soccer cooperative to a dominating 6-1 triumph over Interstate 8 Conference rival La Salle-Peru Wednesday evening under the lights in Morris.

“You don’t have many games like this, especially three in a row with a personal and team outcome, that’s so amazing,” Carver said. “I give all the credit to my teammates because without them tonight, the last three games for me wouldn’t have been possible.”

Carver now has 10 goals on the season. He received some great help from classmate, Ryker Anderson who notched a pair of goals and an assist along with juniors Jason Ajlan (goal) and Angel Valderrama (two assists).

Senior Ivan Escatel had a tremendous night as goalkeeper turning away 13 of the 14 shots he faced as Morris-Seneca (4-4, 2-1 I8) ran away and hid from L-P with Carver in command offensively once again.

“Kalen (Carver) has really worked hard on finding the gaps in the defenses we’ve faced the last three games and it showed for a third straight time tonight,” Morris-Seneca veteran coach David Valdivia said. “He’s so fast and he’s been timing that speed so perfectly that things are really clicking for him right now.”

L-P (3-4, 0-3 I8) were able to get one shot past Escatel, but the Cavaliers couldn’t keep up with the scoring onslaught Carver and company put forth.

“They played some good through-balls with their speed on the top and that hurt us early and we could never recover,” L-P coach David Spudic said. “Credit to Morris and I always like playing them because you never know what the outcome will be (L-P won 1-0 at the Earlville tournament on Aug. 26). We had a tough match yesterday and we’ve got some guys out sick, so now we’re even for the year after their great performance tonight.”

Carver started things out early in the first half with a breakaway goal after an assist from Valderrama that put Morris-Seneca ahead 1-0 at 31:10.

He’d add his second score just minutes later after a nice pass from Anderson and an easy breakaway tap in at 25:15 that gave the home squad a 2-0 advantage.

“Ryker gave me a good pass and it was easy from there,” Carver said. “That two-goal lead really gave us some momentum from there.

That it did as Anderson marked two goals in just 11 seconds, scoring unassisted on a breakaway jaunt at 5:18 and again without help off the reset scant moments later to put Morris-Seneca ahead 4-0 at 5:08 of the first half as the two teams eventually went into halftime with the hosts in firm control.

“On my second score I pressed really hard and maybe I scared them a little with my speed and just put it in the goal,” Anderson said. “We had a really good first half.”

L-P cut the gap to 4-1 at 35:30 of the second half as senior Giovanni Garcia beat Escatel in close off a rebound of freshman Ismael Mejia’s shot.

But shortly thereafter Ajlan tallied at 33:18 off a nice assist from Valderrama to push the lead back up to 5-1. Carver concluded his amazing night and three games worth of play after an unassisted goal at 19:19 that set the final reading on the scoreboard.

“Every player contributes to big wins like this and we’ve been really playing so well lately,” Carver said. “I hope I can keep it going and more importantly we can keep this hot streak going as a team.”