Gordon Gus Merritt Stewart
It wasn’t always pretty, or comfortable considering the soaking rains and cool temps, but Wednesday’s Division II sectional semifinal against visiting Lakewood was certainly a rewarding one for Buckeye Valley.
The Barons poured in a pair of goals, one in each half, while the rain poured down on them.
“We ended up with 25 shots, and we had Lakewood’s goalie down for 10 saves,” BV coach Sophie Halliday said. “So we weren’t always accurate, which you would expect with the rain, but we definitely had the best of things offensively.”
The Barons got on the board just 10 minutes in, when sophomore Alyssa Spencer took a pass from junior Kaitlin James and fired a laser past the opposing keeper and into the back of the net from just outside the 18-yard box.
The teams traded chances the rest of the half, but BV entered the break with the same 1-0 advantage.
The squad got a little insurance in the second, when junior Marisa Koss, a defender, leaked forward from her position and fired a long-range bomb that somehow found its way past the keeper and into the net.
After the game, Halliday said she couldn’t be more pleased with how her girls performed.
“This is hands down the best I’ve seen them play this year,” the coach said of her squad, which improved to 12-5 with the win. “I was a little concerned with our confidence seeing how we didn’t have a ton of momentum coming out of the regular season, but the girls showed up in what was absolutely pouring rain from start to finish.”
With the win, BV will play the winner of the Jonathan Alder-Columbus East semi. Buckeye Valley played second-seeded Alder twice this year, once in the preseason (a win) and once in the regular season (a loss).
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