Packers dropped by JM

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, September 11, 2002

Ivan Esquivel scored his team-leading eighth goal for the Austin boys' soccer team, but his second-half red card helped Rochester John Marshall maintain its 5-1 lead and eventual victory over the visiting Packers Tuesday night.

Esquivel broke the Rockets' 5-0 shutout with his goal in the second half. But a collision later in the half near the net with JM's goalie led to words being exchanged and a brief shoving match. Esquivel received a red card on the play and was subsequently removed from the game.

First-year coach Sam Kolas suggested that his Packers, though 2-6 overall and 1-5 in the Big Nine Conference, may find some positive in the negative.

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"It may actually help our team," Kolas said. "Ivan's the offensive leader of this team. It's never a good thing to get a red card, but this might help the team to use other people and not to rely on Ivan."

State soccer rules require players who receive a red card to sit out the next match. Austin hosts Albert Lea Thursday at 7 p.m. at Wescott Field. Packer sophomore Dennis Christensen will likely fill Esquivel's starting forward spot.

Esquivel will be eligible to return to the AHS lineup Saturday when the Packers play at Mankato West at 1 p.m.