Tuesday, October 25th, 2011
By Gary R. Rasberry
Blue Jays knock off Cavaliers
Division III Girls' Soccer Sectional at Elida
  ELIDA - A Coldwater defensive breakdown resulted in Delphos St. John's scoring two goals in less than 30 seconds as the Blue Jays earned a 4-1 win over the Cavaliers in the Division III girls' soccer sectional tournament on Monday afternoon at the Elida soccer stadium.
The second win of the season over Coldwater gives St. John's (5-13) its third straight sectional title and a berth in Elida's district semifinals on Wednesday against Lima Central Catholic starting at 6 p.m. The Cavaliers end their third season at 5-11-1.
The Blue Jays set the tone right from the start, keeping the ball on the Cavaliers' side of the pitch. Coldwater was unable to get the ball across midfield for a bulk of the first half, getting shut out on shot attempts while St. John's had six.
The Jays broke the scoreless tie at the 21:18 mark of the first half when Courtney Grothouse snagged a free ball deep in Cavaliers' territory and put it past Coldwater goalie Krista Wellman.
In the ensuing restart, the Cavaliers could not keep possession and the Blue Jays had a shot on goal. The first shot missed, but St. John's junior Jessica Recker collected the rebound and put the ball in the back of the net just 23 seconds after the first goal of the game.
"I said at halftime that we played a 30-second span that wasn't very good," said Coldwater's coach Scott Brinkman. "That's all it was, 30 seconds. Credit obviously goes to them(St. John's). They were there and they made the plays. If you get behind, you're in trouble. We got behind and we were in trouble."
"They came in with the purpose of controlling the ball today," said Blue Jays' coach John Munoz of his team. "We knew we had to play a slow game and definitely play a lot of ball possession. They came in today and stayed to the plan."
Down two at the half, Coldwater broke the shutout 12 minutes into the second half when the Cavaliers' Holly Rindler scored past St. John's goalie Madison Kreeger.
"I told them at halftime I thought the next goal was going to be the most critical goal," said Brinkman. "We scored the next goal, and at that point, I thought we had the momentum."
Coldwater tried valiantly for the equalizer, but St. John's held tough. The Blue Jays regained the momentum at the 11:02 mark when the Cavaliers committed a foul in the penalty area, giving St. John's a penalty kick. Grothouse stepped up and kicked it past Wellman to push the Blue Jays back to a two-goal advantage.
"That was huge," said Munoz of the PK. "It's one of those signs that that team is starting to believe they can come back at you (regarding Coldwater's goal). You want to take that away from them as soon as possible."
The final goal for St. John's came with just under four minutes remaining in the match, when Recker got her second goal off another rebound.
Brinkman expressed pride in the 11 seniors that have been the architects of the young Cavaliers' program.
"I said that this program has been on their shoulders," said Brinkman of the seniors. "Eleven seniors on your team, and all 11 played tonight and all 11 played their butts off tonight. You don't replace that. The reason that we are here and the reason it was 4-1 and not 10-1 is because we have 11 seniors who have worked and worked from July to this moment. And I'm proud of them."
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