Brown’s header off Brockmiller’s corner jumpstarts QHS soccer team’s offensive outburst


Quincy High School's Andrew Brown gets his head on Boen Brockmiller's corner kick and drives it into the net for the first goal in the Blue Devils' 7-1 victory over Sterling on Tuesday night at Flinn Stadium. | Matt Schuckman photo

QUINCY — The moment he said it, Boen Brockmiller sensed his critique of his own corner kick sounded braggadocious.

So he smiled and paused.

When he continued, Brockmiller’s genuine joy for how the play turned out showed.

“I know I’m biased,” said the senior forward on the Quincy High School boys soccer team. “But it was a great ball.”

His assessment was as spot-on as his kick. Others noted it, too.

Less than a minute into Tuesday night’s Western Big 6 Conference matchup with Sterling, Brockmiller flighted a ball into the penalty area from the left corner that curled into open space and right to the head of junior Andrew Brown, who buried the header for a goal that kickstarted a 7-1 romp.

“I’m glad Andrew got to that,” Brockmiller said. “I know he doesn’t stand that tall, but he can get up there. It helped us move forward in the game and kind of opened the playing field for us.”

It was Brown’s first goal of the season.

“The main thing I saw is no one was marking me,” he said. “So I just went after the ball no matter where it was going. I saw it was in my area and I just jumped and finished it. It was a great ball.”

The suddenness of the goal — it occurred 57 seconds into the game — set the tone on a night where emotions could have been a distraction. The Blue Devils honored the seniors before the game, and all six who are part of the Class of 2023 were in the starting lineup.

It wasn’t just a ceremonial nod. It was effective.

“It was a big conference game, and we knew we had to come out and take care of business if we want to win the conference championship,” Quincy senior defender Nolan Fleer said. “We had a big building block by beating Rochester on Saturday in Chatham, and we knew what we had to do.

“We knew it would be special for the seniors, and everyone came out and did their part.”

It sets up a crucial battle with Geneseo on the road next Tuesday. The Maple Leafs sit atop the WB6 standings at 5-0 with the Blue Devils at 5-1 and Moline at 4-1. If Quincy beats Geneseo, it guarantees itself a share of the WB6 title.

That made capitalizing on the early scoring opportunity vital.

“We need to win every single game to be able to win the conference,” Brown said. “To get off to a start like that is really exciting.”

Despite a momentary blip defensively that allowed the Golden Warriors to tie the game, the Blue Devils controlled the attack. Carter Venvertloh scored twice in the first half, and Biruk Rosen buried a rocket shot as Quincy led 4-1 at halftime.

“When they scored, we knew we couldn’t put our heads down like has happened in the past,” Fleer said. “We knew what we had to do. We came out strong and we just kept coming.”

Brockmiller scored to kickstart the second half, and Quincy was able to substitute liberally over the final 20 minutes after scoring three second-half goals.

“The first 20 minutes of the second half was by far the best we’ve played all year,” Brockmiller said. “I hope we bounce back like that in our next game and carry that forward into regionals and then past that.”

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