Davia Rossi saw the ball deflect off the Marcellus defender’s foot on a simple back pass, and the Schalmont eighth-grader pounced.
“I was looking for any opportunity I could find,” the Sabres’ youngest player said.
Rossi’s steal and breakaway goal that followed with 3:11 left in the first half proved huge as the Sabres held off the Mustangs 2-1 Tuesday night in a Class B sub-regional soccer game at Stillwater High School.
Sydnee Metzold scored Schalmont’s first goal just 57 seconds into the contest on a 25-yard drive that Marcellus netminder Meg Blystone got a piece of.
For a long stretch, the state’s No. 1-ranked team mustered little at the offensive after that tally, while dodging three bullets by the Mustangs at the other.
“We kind of dragged off a little,” Rossi said. “If I have to take a chance to get us going, I’ll take it.”
That chance came late in the first half when Marcellus defender Alana Montreal had a back pass trickle off her foot at the 40-yard line. Rossi scooped up the ball and broke into the open, dribbled hard and beat Blystone from about 10 yards away to the low left corner.
“That’s Davia,” Schalmont coach Alaina Resue said. “She’s going to go hard into every play and try to make the best of it.”
The young Sabre had been in that situation before, but without the finish.
“She has had a couple of breakaways and hit the keeper,” Resue said. “She had it again, and capitalized when it mattered.”
Marcellus (Section III, 14-2-4) got a goal back with 13:50 left in the second half when Madi Belvito ripped a doorstep rebound past a sprawling Alexis Ryder.
The two squared off again with 9:36 left, and Ryder stuffed Belvito’s eight-yard blast on what would be Marcellus’ last quality chance.
“If that goes in, that would have made it a tie game and they’ve got momentum,” Resue said. “That was a big play.”
Marcellus, the state’s No. 14-ranked team, continued to force the issue, but to no avail.
“I told them they’re going to press and do everything they can to create an attack,” Resue said. “We had to limit their chances.”
Schalmont (21-0-0) didn’t capitalize on any of its chances two years ago in a 1-0 regional loss to Marcellus.
“I didn’t have to say anything about that game,” Resue said. “We wanted to come out and take care of business.”
Metzold had a good chance to pad Schalmont’s lead just after Rossi’s goal, but headed the ball over the crossbar. The junior also had a header stopped by Blystone with 1:40 left.
Schalmont will take on either Beekmantown (Section VII, 14-1-1) or Canton (Section X, 13-2-0) Saturday in a regional final at Stillwater. Game time has yet to be determined.
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Categories: High School Sports