WICKLIFFE—A late formation shift led to the only goal of the game in Wickliffe’s 1-0 win over visiting Beachwood on Thursday.
The Blue Devils added a forward with six minutes left to play and that move paid off when Bryanna Butler punched in a long throw-in from Mia Welms with under two minutes remaining in the game.
“The team has not practiced it and were able to adapt and adjust right away,” said Wickliffe coach Steve Gribovicz of the new formation. “Our defense had to switch to new players and formation as well and was able to withstand a few attacks. We got an opportunity near the 20 with two minutes left on a throw-in and Mia Welms had a long toss that bounced into the box and Bryanna Butler was backside to put it into the back of the net. It was one of the most thrilling goals I’ve seen in my coaching career.”
Wickliffe improved to 11-1-1 overall and 4-1-1 in the Chagrin Valley Conference Valley Division.
“The team showed a lot of composure in this game,” Gribovicz said. “It was a hectic game from the situation to the sideline, to the crowd and the girls stayed focused on the end goal. We had some young players step up in this game. They have been putting in good work the past few weeks in practice and games and made the most of their opportunity.”
Kaylee Lauriel recorded one save for the Blue Devils while Miranda Luxenburg finished with four for the Bison.
“Beachwood is a much-improved side and played a very good game all-around. They have a lot of good pieces in place,” Gribovicz said. “This is the type of game we needed going into October and shows what this team is capable of when they play together and make the most of the opportunities when they have them.”