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Goretti turns up heat for boys soccer win

September 16, 1998|By MARK KELLER

"Sluggish" was the best word Marty Wills could come up with to describe St. Maria Goretti's play in the first half of Tuesday's boys soccer match against Boonsboro.

But, hey, under a blazing sun in 95-degree heat, nearly anyone would be sluggish.

The good news for Wills: When the sun ducked behind the clouds in the second half, the Gaels perked up and took a 2-0 win over the Warriors at Goretti.

"(The weather) may have had something to do with it. But I'd hate to blame it on the weather," Wills said of his team's slow start. "We were just very sluggish. I don't think we came ready to play."

Boonsboro (1-2-1) dictated the flow of the game from the outset. The Warriors kept the ball in Goretti's end for much of the first half, but still failed to get many quality scoring chances.

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In the sixth minute, Boonsboro's Josh Kretzel broke in alone on Bill Cramer. Kretzel's shot sailed over Cramer and hit the crossbar. Cramer later stoned Rob Pongratz on a shot from the right side of the box.

"I thought we were very slow to the ball," Wills said. "They dominated the middle of the field in the first half. They played very patient and spread out. We tended to crowd the middle a lot."

The Gaels (3-1-2) still had several scoring chances, the best coming in the 38th minute when Trey Cobb drilled a shot from 12 yards out. But Boonsboro keeper Sam Lind knocked the ball aside, and Goretti failed to take advantage of a corner kick opportunity.

"We outshot them in the first half, but Sam kept us in the game," said Boonsboro coach Jeff Palm. "He has great presence out there. I told those guys if it weren't for Sam, it would have been pretty ugly."

The second half belonged to Goretti. The Gaels constantly had the ball near the net and finally broke through when James Cosentino headed one over the top of Lind.

Lind got some revenge in the 71st minute when Trey Cobb dribbled into the box. Lind stopped Cobb's first shot, then covered up before he could get off another.

But three minutes later, A.J. McGarity scooted one past Lind into the lower right corner of the goal for a 2-0 Goretti lead.

"Goretti does a very good job of pressuring the ball," Palm said. "They constantly put pressure on the ball and that's what they did here today."

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