GIRLS SOCCER: 'SPEEDY' MARCELLUS BLANKS CHENANGO VALLEY, 3-0, IN OPENING ROUND OF CLASS B STATE PLAYOFFS (24 PHOTOS)
(2023-11-04)By MATT PATTONBroome County East Sports Report
WAVERLY — Section III powerhouse Marcellus played a dominant second half to break open a scoreless tie at the half in a 3-0 win over Chenango Valley in a New York State Class B quarter-final match-up here Saturday afternoon at Memorial Stadium.
The match opened with competitive play from both sides. The teams exchanged long possessions in their forward halves.
However, midway through the first half, Marcellus began to build the advantage. The Mustangs kept the ball out of their back half, and Chenango Valley rarely broke through Marcellus’s back line.
The Mustangs attacked the Warriors’ outsides, gashing deep into the CV defense by racing along the touchlines. The piercing runs resulted in multiple crossing opportunities.
Chenango Valley’s gritty defensive line paired with keeper Hannah Watson to thwart all attacks. Defenders deflected shot attempts, made key tackles and intercepted passes.
Watson stonewalled every attempt that made it through. She seized blistering shots and battled to corral the ball, while Mustang players collided with her.
The Warriors made it to halftime in a 0-0 draw.
Chenango Valley head coach Devon Lash was impressed with his team’s effort.
“I give them credit. That first half they gave every ounce of energy they had. The double, triple teaming, the blocking, working as a full defensive unit. I told them at half that was probably the best defensive effort we’ve played all season as a team.”
Marcellus took the reins and dominated the second half.
Seven minutes into the half, Marielle Kennedy drove a ball brilliantly from the right side of the box to the far post. Claire Card headed the ball into the back of the net for the game’s first goal.
Ten minutes later, the Mustangs had a free kick from a few yards outside the penalty box. They played it short, and Jadyn Baker passed to Neve Murphy, who dribbled through Chenango Valley’s line and found herself one-on-one with Watson. Murphy pushed the ball past Watson for Marcellus’s second goal.
With just over 11 minutes to play, Marcellus struck one more time. Janie Powell made a slick pass to CeCe Powell behind the Chenango Valley defense. Watson came out to defend the attack, but Powell deeked her way past the diving Watson and scored on the open net.
Lash said the Mustangs’ pace overwhelmed his team.
“Our second half, unfortunately, I think we just fatigued,” he said. “I don’t have major depth on the bench. We used what we had.
“I give the girls every credit that they fought. They gave every ounce from minute zero to minute 80.”
“I am nothing but proud of my team,” added Lash. “They really gave everything they had. We knew going into this game it was going to be tough facing a very fast Marcellus team.”
Chenango Valley finishes the season with a 12-3 record as the reigning, three-time defending Section IV champion.
PHOTOS BY MATT PATTON.
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