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The Daily



09-08-03: Wave crash into Bulldogs


As the time wound down in the first half, it seemed that Celina was looking to get ready for a battle in the second half against Greenville in trying to break a 1-1 tie.
Just as quickly, though, the momentum went to Greenville.
The Green Wave scored a goal with eight seconds left in the half to put them up for good. Two insurance goals in the second half made the final 4-1 at Celina Soccer Stadium on Saturday evening. The Bulldogs drop to 2-3 on the season as the Green Wave improve to 3-2.
The last-second goal seemed to take something out of the Bulldogs, negating what was a strong first half with plenty of attacks and some timely defense.
With the officials ready to blow the whistle to end the half, Kyle Edwards, got past the Celina defense and after a rebound shot, put the ball past Mark Hopf at the 39:52 mark of the game to put the Green Wave up for good.
“That was a breakdown in the defense,” said Celina coach Bruce Strine. “It’s too bad. We broke down on defense late in the half. You can’t do that.”
For the first 39:52, The Bulldogs and Green Wave played fairly even. Celina got the opening goal of the game in the 15th minute when Alex McKirnan fired a pass towards Kyle Grunden, who booted the ball past Wave keeper Stephen Gruenburg with ease.
Greenville didn’t need a lot of time to respond, Adam Warner took the ball at midfield and sprinted past the Celina defense in the 18th minute to tie the game.
Defense stepped up on both sides as the keepers made some big saves to keep the game tied. The Wave had a perfect chance to break the tie with 4:30 left in the half when Hopf was drawn out of the goal on one shot attempt. Nick Uhlenhake, who started the season in goal for Celina, made a spectacular sliding kick to knock the ball out of harm’s reach.
In the second half, Greenville began to break down Celina’s flatback-four defensive set and added two more goals. Dane Brinley scored in the 46th minute on an unassisted goal. A minute later, Warner earned his second goal with another sprint past the defense for the goal.
“They beat us on the long ball,” said Strine. “They have the speed up front to do that. Three of the four goals was that way.”
“I know a lot of people favor the flatback-four. I am not a fan,” said Greenville coach Joe Gaba. “I like the diamond with the sweeper and stopper. With the flatback-four, if (the set) stays flat, they’re very easy to beat. If they do as they should, form a diagonal, the players were instructed to go into the area of diagonal where there was more space.”
Celina, on the otherhand, was checked up more at midfield in the second half. The Bulldogs did manage to get seven shots on goal in the final 40 minutes but Gruenburg only needed to make saves on three of the shots.
“We adjusted at the midfield at halftime because they kept going through the midfield,” said Gaba. “There was never a point in the entire match that I was comfortable that Celina couldn’t come back in the match. They did it in the jayvee game. Their game was solid until they got a little fatigued. Anywhere in there, they could have turned this game around.”
Celina and Greenville each attempted 15 shots on goal. Hopf made five saves for the Bulldogs while Gruenburg made six stops.
“We have to get better,” said Strine. “We’re going to make some changes to get better.”
The Celina junior varsity came back from 0-3 to force a 3-3 tie in the opening match. After Greenville shot one into their own goal in the first half, Celina got to within one on a Matt Stetler goal early in the second half. Brandon Smith got the tie with 7:17 left in the game with a crosser into the goal.
Celina hosts Kenton in a Western Buckeye League match on Tuesday at the Soccer Stadium.


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