Sometimes you just have to let it rip.
That’s what Benet junior Ryley Guay did during the 15th minute of Wednesday’s East Suburban Catholic Conference game against Marist.
Guay unleashed a 35-yard rocket that found the lower right corner of the net to break a scoreless tie and the host Redwings went on to rip Marist 5-0 in Lisle.
“Usually what I do is look to see if there’s a guy making a run through and see if I can make a through ball for a breakaway,” Guay said. “But I saw the open shot and took it.
“To be honest I wasn’t expecting it to go where it did. I was kind of hoping it’d be on frame and maybe something good would happen.”
Marist goalkeeper Noah Kemp had no chance to stopping Guay’s shot. That was significant considering Kemp had played an outstanding game in shutting out the Redwings 2-0 last season.
The early lead allowed Benet (12-2-1, 7-0-1) to relax a little.
“It was huge for us because I think both teams played with a lot of energy and a lot of effort but it was pretty sloppy,” Benet coach Sean Wesley said. “I don’t think either team had a lot of control of where the ball went.
“For us to get a goal like that and settle into the game, certainly we know we can defend so to go up a goal just exudes confidence and we went from there.”
While star forward Kyle Kenagy draws most of the attention from defenses and the Redwings constantly try to feed the ball to him, Wesley is comfortable with other players taking shots from distance.
“Everybody on the team has the green light,” Wesley said. “Once we get within 30 yards, if we don’t have pressure on the ball we want to make things dangerous.
“I know some teams like possession. I look at it like we love the dangerous stuff and that’s what we want to do.”
The goal was Guay’s third of the season and his first game-winner, but Wesley was not surprised the shot went in.
“He can shoot from range,” Wesley said. “He finds himself in that space a lot and does a great job of taking the ball away from pressure and opening his hips and letting it fly. And he’s got a cannon.”
The Redwings were far from satisfied at halftime and came out of the break with guns blazing. They scored on four of their first five shots to put the RedHawks (6-10-1, 3-3) away.
Sophomore Connor Mote scored the first two goals, with his first tally coming 41 seconds into the second half off a feed from Kenagy. He made it 3-0 with 25:03 left on a rebound shot after Daniel Morefield hit the left post. Kenagy and Omar Kashow also scored for Benet.
“I was in the right spot sometimes,” Mote said. “Coach tells us to come out the first five minutes and just attack hard, get a goal, put them out of the game. I guess if you score in the beginning it can put everybody down on the other team.”
That and fatigue did in Marist.
“We’ve got some tired legs,” said Marist coach Sean Maxwell, whose team was outshot 20-3. “We love playing on this field but I’ve got kind of a short bench at this point. That got us but it’s one of those things where they’re better and eventually it catches up with you. They’re a very good team.”