October 27, 2012
On to semifinals for stingy Cincy
Rutan collects 99th goal to nip Faith Heritage 1-0
Bob Ellis/staff photographer
Faith Heritage goalie Emily Cooper makes a save on a point blank shot by Jordan Lidell (4) of Cincinnatus during Friday’s Class D sectional soccer outing. Cincy advanced, 1-0.
CINCINNATUS — It brought Bailey Rutan one step closer to a milestone, and the Cincinnatus Central girls’ soccer team one step farther along in what has already been a magical season.
The Red Lions’ defense, meanwhile, just maintained the status quo.
Senior forward Rutan scored 5:17 into the game Friday afternoon to cap a long solo run as the second-seeded Red Lions shaded visiting No. 10 Faith Heritage 1-0 in the Section 3 Class D quarterfinals. It was Rutan’s 31st goal of the season and, more importantly, the 99th of her varsity career — a fact she was reminded of by the players on the bench before the ensuing kickoff.
Junior goalkeeper Susie Waltz and her defense, meanwhile, recorded their fifth shutout in a row and 10th of the season. Waltz came up with just three saves to eight for the Saints’ Emily Cooper as the winners owned the shot chart 22-11.
Speedy junior sweeper Darcie Wood played a particularly big part in keeping Faith Heritage off the scoreboard as on three separate occasions she sprinted from behind to overtake a Saints’ player headed in alone on Waltz, as well as breaking up numerous other attempted advances by the visitors inside or near the box.
“I dribbled up, got through a couple of defenders and had one left,” Rutan said of her deciding goal. “I got past her, saw the upper 90 (of the goal) was open and put it over the goalkeeper’s hands. Our coaches had seen a couple of Faith Heritage’s games so we knew what they had, but they came out stronger than we expected. This wasn’t one of our best games, but we hung in there.”
Asked if closing in on 100 goals ever affects her, Rutan — who almost had her 100th but hit the left post on a shot from deep on the left side with 11:20 left in the game — said that “It does when I have an open goal. Sometimes I think about that and fumble it. But sometimes I use it to push and make myself better.”
“I haven’t talked to Bailey about it,” said Cincy coach Lisa Schuyler, whose team is now 15-1-1 on the season, including a second straight Central Counties League championship. “She’s a very good player. In my time here no one has scored that many goals, and I don’t know that anyone before achieved it. Bill (assistant coach Bill Cobb) and I support her, but our focus, and Bailey’s, is on the whole team working together, on going as far as we can as a team.
“WE HAD TO PLAY very sound and strong on defense,” added Schuyler. “We knew about number 12 (senior forward Bailey Shattell, who led the Saints with 19 goals this season), and our defense had to play a different game than they were used to. They did well.”
“I knew as the game got farther along that we had to work harder to keep Faith Heritage out of our end,” said Waltz, whose biggest test came on a direct kick by Shattell from just outside the box 7:15 into the second half that she was able to knock down and grab. “I thought that might be a penalty kick and was glad it wasn’t; I hoped that the officials saw that it was outside the box, and they did.”
Waltz was also called on to make a save on a shot from the left side 30 seconds into the game as the Saints, who finished at 6-10-2, applied some early pressure. They also came alive in the last 15 minutes of the game as elimination loomed.
“I was very proud of how they girls played,” Faith Heritage coach Mike Peplinski said. “They have a lot of character. We had some great opportunities, but that’s how soccer is sometimes. You don’t always convert some of your chances.
“Number 21 (Rutan) caught us off-guard with her speed in the first 15 minutes. We had one girl cover her, with support behind her. She has good speed and strength. Number nine (Darcie Wood) had very good speed and played very good one-on-one defense.”
The visitors had three great scoring chances in the second half. Shattell chipped a shot just over the bar from deep on the left side 7:50 in, while sophomore midfielder Abigail Studt chipped a shot just over the crossbar from the left side with 15:30 left and Shattell headed a pass just over the bar five minutes later. Cincy also had some other chances go by the board, the best coming as junior midfielder Devin Blanchard hit the crossbar with a shot from 10 yards out with 19:30 left in the game
In addition to Waltz and Darcie Wood, Schuyler also praised backs Kassidy Kievit (senior) and Danielle Wood (junior, Darcie’s twin sister) and junior stopper Sydney Burritt.
FRIDAY’S GAME WAS the first for the Red Lions since last Saturday, when they scored a 1-0 win at Class C-1 semifinalist Tully. Cincy went 11-0-1 in league play this season, outscoring its opposing 74-6.“Bill Cobb told the girls that there wouldn’t be any more 8-0 games, just one- or two-goal games,’ Schuyler said. “It was good to end the season with Tully, a good game in which the girls were under more pressure to get them ready to step into a different season.”
The Red Lions have a tougher assignment upcoming, as they’ll meet defending sectional champion Remsen in the semifinals. The third-seeded Rams improved to 14-2 Friday evening with a 5-0 win over No. 6 Madison.The other semifinal will match top seed Poland (15-1), a 4-0 winner over No. 8 Sackets Harbor Friday, against fourth-seeded Copenhagen, which improved to 13-3-1 by shading No. 5 McGraw 1-0 Thursday. Both games are currently slated to take place Wednesday at neutral sites, according to the official Section 3 bracket.
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