Role-playing: No. 1 J. Carroll tops frustrated St. Mary's, 2-1 Goal with 10 seconds left dashes solid Saints effort

Girls soccer

October 21, 1998|By Glenn P. Graham | Glenn P. Graham,SUN STAFF

Top-ranked John Carroll was busy celebrating while many of the visiting St. Mary's players sat on the field in disbelief.

If there was ever a perfect microcosm of how two teams' seasons have unfolded, it took place yesterday afternoon in Bel Air when junior Kourtney Porcella scored with 10 seconds left to provide the Patriots with a 2-1 win over the Saints.

For the Patriots, who improved to 12-1 overall and 9-1 in the Catholic League, it was more opportunistic play turning into a positive result. For St. Mary's, now 6-8-1 and still looking for answers offensively as the league playoffs fast approach, it was another solid outing with no reward.

"This has been our season," said St. Mary's coach Jerry Tobin. "We've been playing well since the fourth game, but we can't find the old net. Then, we make a mistake and pay for it. That sums it up."

Freshman Kerrie Sample had a temporary solution to the Saints' scoring woes when she got the game even with 10 minutes remaining, scoring off a rebound in front after senior Kelly Bertwell had a header turned back.

Porcella had the last-minute final say, though.

She let a Lindsey Syphard throw-in go by her, shielding a defender at the same time, and then one-timed a shot with her left foot just inside the 18-yard mark, finding the lower left corner.

"I was inside the 18 and thought I got to do it. I just shot it," said Porcella, who now has four goals and three assists on the season.

That's what John Carroll coach Gary Lynch was asking from her all along.

"I was yelling at her the whole game to get a shot off instead of trying to first set it up. She really cranked it, too. That was an important goal for her and will help her confidence," said Lynch.

The Patriots knew exactly how St. Mary's was feeling yesterday. Last Tuesday, McDonogh handed them their first loss of the season, with the game-winning goal coming with 30 seconds left.

Junior Jen Biscoe gave the Patriots a 1-0 first-half lead yesterday with her 12th goal of the season. She won a ball at midfield, turned around a defender before finding the near post from 15 yards out.

A big key for the Patriots this season has been their ability to score first. In the first half, they have now outscored their opponents by a 23-1 margin.

"The team that scores first wins 80 percent of the time. That's something we stress over and over," said Lynch.

Tobin, who got strong games from senior keeper Amy Mulligan (10 saves) and junior sweeper Kelly Coppedge, is confident there is still time to get things turned around before the league playoffs begin early next month.

"We'll be dangerous and I don't think many teams will want to see us. Anything can happen in the tournament," he said.

Pub Date: 10/21/98

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