Cavaliers set for girls soccer showdown This time, S. Carroll, Centennial will meet in regional title game

November 07, 1995|By Glenn P. Graham | Glenn P. Graham,SUN STAFF

At last, an appropriate region final.

Last season, with the open playoff format in its first year, two of the better girls soccer teams in the metro area -- Centennial and South Carroll -- met in the first round of the Class 3A-4A West region playoffs.

Following Centennial's 1-0 win, South Carroll coach Jim Horn said the game was worthy of a state final. It was indeed a classic.

Centennial went on to capture its third state title in four years with South Carroll seeing a fine season (11-2) come to an end much too early.

When this year's draw came out and had the two teams at opposite ends of the bracket, a rematch -- this time in the region finals -- seemed fitting. Centennial will travel to South Carroll at 7 p.m. tonight for the Class 3A-4A West region.

"I think it's much more appropriate playing them at this stage rather earlier," said Horn. "They've got a very, very good team with a lot of postseason experience. It's a privilege for us to have a chance to play a team as good as they are. We have a great deal of respect for their program and the history behind it."

South Carroll knows that history well. Centennial has ended the Cavaliers season three of the past four years. Last season in Winfield, the visiting Eagles got an early goal and held off a furious second-half rally from South Carroll.

"After last year's game, Jim [Horn] came over and said he felt that was for the state championship," Centennial coach Dave Greenberg. "He turned out to be prophetically correct. The Perry Hall game in the [state] finals was pretty tough, but the South Carroll game was a war. He was right about that."

South Carroll comes into tonight's game ranked sixth in the metro area with a perfect 15-0 record. Centennial is ranked fourth with an 11-3-1 mark.

Both teams have plenty of balance offensively with stingy defenses.

Junior Lindsey Vosloh leads the Cavaliers with 11 goals and five assists and has had plenty of help from Shannan Henley (eight goals, five assists) and senior Michelle Mitchell, who scored the game-winner on Saturday to lead the Cavs past Liberty. The defense has been the Cavs strength all season long with seniors Jamie Baier, Carrie Tamburo and Erin O'Neill providing plenty of help for freshman keeper Amanda Hughes.

"The real key for us is whether we can shut them down," Horn said. "They have the explosiveness to put you on your heels and keep you there all night. We're going to have to control the ball."

After an 0-2 start, Centennial has been near flawless with some familiar names -- forward Michelle Clare, midfielder Lauren Molinaro and keeper Rima Sidhu -- blending in with some new faces. Jane Williams (seven goals, four assists) is one of three freshmen starting for the Eagles with another one receiving as much playing time off the bench. Clare leads the team in scoring with eight goals and three assists with Molinaro (seven goals, two assists) a dominating presence in the middle.

"I think we're much more focused now, playing harder and practicing harder," Greenberg said. "We also have the right people in the right spots. We just have to continue to play strong defense and every once in a while finish on an opportunity."

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