Tuesday, May 30, 2023

Second-half surge leads Perry past Geneva

PERRY—A second-half surge led Perry to a 3-0 win over visiting Geneva in a Division II sectional semifinal at Alumni Stadium on Monday.

The Pirates scored all three goals in the final 40 minutes of play.

“It’s nice to win and keep playing,” said Perry coach Rich Stavar. “We’d like to keep playing as long as possible. I think that’s why we’re all here. It’s satisfying that we get to play another day.”

Perry and Geneva previously met on Sept. 23 with the Pirates claiming a 3-2 win at SPIRE.

Despite that victory, the Pirates knew they’d be tested against the Eagles in the postseason opener and through the first 40 minutes, the two teams battled to a 0-0 draw.

“We talked about making a couple of adjustments on the field,” Stavar said of his halftime adjustments. “Usually at halftime, it’s more of a discussion than directives, but we had a couple of ideas for them and they had a couple of ideas and we managed to put them all together. I think in the second half, I think we were a little bit quicker to the ball, so that helped a lot.”

The Pirates earned a corner kick early in the second half and Faye Makad launched a ball into the area in front of the net. The ball deflected off a player and into the net for her ninth goal of the season a 1-0 Perry lead.

Both teams threatened—Perry’s Lilly Agostine finished the game with three saves while her Geneva counterpart, Giana Logan, saved 10 shots—but the score remained 1-0 until Marcella Rodriguez scored her seventh goal of the year on a right to left shot that squeezed past Logan.

The Pirates added an own-goal with 40 seconds left in the game.

Freshman phenom Jordan Rowan was held scoreless but the Pirates were well-balanced on the offensive end and found a way to win.

“I don’t think that we’re a one-headed monster,” Stavar said. “We have a number of kids who can score and we have backs that can score. We had good service from our center back and that was close to going in. I think you can cut off one of our heads but a couple more sprout up when we need them.”

Defensively, the Pirates prevented the Eagles from approaching the net and Agostine, who recorded her eighth shutout of the season, was effective in taking away the long balls Geneva served up.

“She had to make a couple of saves,” Stavar said. “She did a really nice job coming off her line tonight and cutting off some of the long balls that they were trying to play.”

The Pirates, who improved to 14-3, advanced to the sectional championship game. They’ll host Niles McKinley on Thursday at 6:00 p.m.


Steve Harehttp://www.ohiovarsity.com
Steve Hare is the Chagrin Valley Conference's Sports Information Director. He also created and publishes OhioVarsity.com, 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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