Independence records eighth straight shutout

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Tyler Korecko

Elek McDonald scored two goals and Seamus Kral, Wyatt Kunevicius, Kyle Streibel and Sam Belitz each had one to lead Independence to a 6-0 win over visiting Open Door Christian Academy on Thursday.

More importantly, the state-ranked Blue Devils remained undefeated at 10-0 and moved into the Ohio High School Athletic Association record book with eight consecutive shutouts. Independence is tied for 12th in the state.

“The boys are still focused on trying to go undefeated in the regular season, but that target keeps getting bigger and teams are coming out trying to knock off the top team,” said Independence coach Ryan MacRaild. “We just try to break the game down and stick with what works, move the ball around, find the open man and make plays.”

Tyler Korecko recorded two saves in the win to extend his school record for career shutouts to 23.

“It’s a great feeling that we’ve been able to stay consistent due to our hard work and focus in practice and in the game,” Korecko said. “I’m so appreciative of my defense. They make my job much easier by pressuring and ultimately limiting the shots on goal.”

Independence led just 2-0 at the half but dominated play in the final 40 minutes.

McDonald also recorded an assist in the win.

“Elek had a great game,” MacRaild said. “He is definitely an unsung hero on this team. When the ball goes through him, good things happen.”

Kunevicius added two assists while Belitz and Luke Wisniewski each had one.

Independence hosts Berkshire on Tuesday.

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The creator and publisher of OhioVarsity.com, Hare has covered high school sports in Northeast Ohio since 1997. He began as a correspondent for the Lake County News Herald, where he contributed until 2011, primarily covering high school football and wrestling. In 1999, Hare began writing for IrishIllustrated.com, a member of the Scout.com network of high school and college sports web sites. He focuses on covering Notre Dame football recruiting. OhioVarsity.com was created in 2004 and was a member of the Rivals.com network until 2012. The site's original purpose was to cover Ohio high school football and recruiting news but since has grown to cover all sports and to provide sports information services to high school athletic programs and individual teams. Hare attended Willoughby South High School through the middle of his senior year, then graduated from Berkshire High School in Burton in 1986. He played football, wrestled and was an all-Geauga county baseball player (1986). He lives in Chardon with his wife Paulette and their children.