September 27, 2010
Eagles blow past Cincy in 2nd half
McGRAW — Using a stiff Saturday wind as a second half ally, this Central Counties League soccer showdown of rivals turned into a breeze for McGraw Central girls.
The Eagles snapped a halftime deadlock with four unanswered second half goals and defeated visiting Cincinnatus Central 5-1, staying unbeaten in league play at 6-0 and improving to 7-2 overall.
Kaitelyn Leonard had three goals and two assists, while Jaimee Griffin tallied twice and picked up an assist for the victors. Winning the pre-game coin toss and electing to go into the wind in the opening half was a move that paid off for the Eagles, too.
“I felt we were overall the stronger team but the wind was so strong it would add a player. If we could go into the wind, keep the ball down and still score, we could dominate the second half,” was the reasoning of McGraw coach Dave Law. “That is pretty much how it played out. Cincy, being our biggest rival, did not hold back on anything. They seem to have a well-rounded team that can strike at any time.”
Leonard struck first, scoring two minutes into the game off a through pass by Kailey Reddick, but Cincy came up with an equalizer some 10 minutes later. Kirsty Turner lofted a long ball out of her own end that set-up Devin Blanchard, who beat the Eagles sweeper and keeper Hayley MacLean to tie things at a goal apiece.
Cincy (3-2 CCL, 3-3 overall) held a 6-2 shot edge in the first half but would not test MacLean again as McGraw dominated after the break. Griffin got the go-ahead goal nearly five minutes into the stanza off a Leonard crossing pass and the hosts were on their way. Leonard made it 3-1 off a Nicole Purcell pass, Griffin scored off a corner kick taken by Leonard and Leonard finished off her hat trick with 10 minutes to to with Griffin picking up the assist.
The two teams will meet again this coming Saturday when the SUNY Cortland Stadium Complex hosts a doubleheader between the two schools. McGraw and Cincy girls play at 5:30 p.m, with the boys following at 7:30.
“Saturday night’s game at Cortland State should be a good one as both teams simply want to go head to head without wind, rain or interference. It should be a lot of fun,” said McGraw’s Law.
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