Friday, October 7, 2022

Cuyahoga Heights finishes strong in winning sectional title

Cornerstone Christian Academy scored the first goal of a Division III sectional championship game at Cuyahoga Heights on Thursday but the host Redskins didn’t flinch and went on to a 5-1 win.

The Redskins regrouped at halftime and scored two goals in the first two minutes of the second half to take a 2-1 lead and added three more goals to punch their ticket to Monday’s district semifinal at Wickliffe.

“It was a hard fought game between both teams,” Cuyahoga Heights coach Christy Zawadzki said. “The girls really came together in the second half and played like they have been playing this season. Defensively, we settled down and got into our game.”

Julia Harris opened the second half scoring by finishing off a Reagan Sturgill cross.

Brooke Wilson took it from there by scoring the next two goals on hustle plays and Kelly Orlowski made it 4-1 when she placed a shot just inside the back post.

Wilson closed out the scoring with her third goal of the night off a direct kick from Alex Pignatiello.

“Jordan Sturgill lost last season to a torn ACL in our game against Cornerstone, really stepped up and played an incredible game,” Zawadzki said. “The win was a total team effort. Every girl in our program is instrumental in what happens each game, whether they are on the field or not.”

The Redskins advanced to play at Wickliffe on Monday at 7:00 p.m.

Cuyahoga Heights won the regular season matchup 6-1 but the postseason adds a level of intensity the Redskins will have to battle in addition to a game Wickliffe side.

“We know that they are an extremely tough team and it is going to be a battle,” Zawadzki said. “They have strong, quick forwards and stopping Gianna Ranallo, Caitlyn Henderson, Jenna Melaragno and Joelle Banks is extremely difficult. Plus, their keeper is aggressive and tough. It will be a very difficult game.”

Steve Hare
Steve Hare is the Chagrin Valley Conference's Sports Information Director. He also created and publishes, an online publication dedicated to providing hyperlocal coverage to area high school athletic programs. Hare began covering high school sports for the Lake County News Herald in 1997. Hare attended Willoughby South High School through the middle of his senior year, then graduated from Berkshire High School in Burton in 1986. He played football, wrestled and was an all-Geauga county baseball player (1986). He lives in Chardon with his wife Paulette and their children.

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