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Saints' upset bid slips away

October 06, 2005|by DAN KAUFFMAN

kauffman@herald-mail.com

SAINT JAMES - For 46 minutes, the St. James boys soccer team played like it was the favorite against Mid Atlantic Conference power Georgetown Day.

The next two minutes left the Saints wondering about what could have been.

Goals by Dickson Cohen in the 47th minute and Jeff Tracy in the 49th minute deflated St. James, and the Saints had to settle for moral victories in a 3-0 loss Wednesday afternoon.

"We played well today, and that's what most people don't understand, you can play well in this league and get beat, 3-0," Saints coach Chris Downs said. "We put that effort against some teams, and we'll open some eyes."

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St. James (5-6, 1-4) had three golden opportunities to score in the first half against Georgetown Day (8-2-2).

In the 14th minute, a scrum broke out in front of the Georgetown Day goal, and at least two Saints took a swing at the ball, which caromed like a silver sphere in a pinball machine until a defender swatted it out of danger.

In the 38th minute, Branden Brunner rushed from his midfield spot to join in an attack and wound up with the ball on his right foot and an open look at the net. His shot toward the right side was deflected just past the post.

Brunner managed to rise up and get his head on the corner kick that followed - and this time the ball missed by less than a foot to the left.

"We put one more guy up and tried to generate more offense, and it worked for the most part," Downs said.

St. James came out on the attack in the opening minutes of the second half, firing the first two shots. But everything changed on Cohen's individual brilliance.

Cohen, who made a couple nice runs through the Saints' defense in the first half, got the ball toward the left corner of St. James' end, and quickly made a move to the outside to lose his defender. He then cut back inside and found the net with his shot to finally break the scoreless tie.

"I told them at halftime that we had to keep up our intensity, and if (Georgetown Day) got the first one, they were going to bury us," Downs said.

That's exactly what happened. The wind came out of the Saints' sails, and Cohen made them pay again, making a long run up the right side and finding a wide-open Tracy with an easy crossing pass to make it 2-0. Tracy's run down the right in the 62nd minute led to his second score.

Georgetown Day finished with a 9-4 advantage in shots in the second half.

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