Brown's goal sends City over Western and to title

Winning score in 1-0 game comes after two misses

Girls soccer

High Schools

October 19, 2001|By Nathan Max | Nathan Max,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

City center forward Danyelle Brown is just a sophomore, but she is quickly becoming one of the least popular people at Western High.

Yesterday afternoon, Brown broke a defensive stalemate with a goal in the final minute to lead visiting City to a 1-0 victory over Western in the inaugural girls soccer City title game. It marked the second straight season Brown scored the decisive goal in the second half against Western.

For Brown, this year's game-winner redeemed her for two opportunities she had missed earlier. In the 73rd minute, Brown took a pass from Christen Cromwell and had an empty goal to shoot at from six yards out. But Western junior sweeper Krystle Wartman dove feet-first to her right to clear the ball off the goal line and keep the game scoreless.

In the 19th minute, Brown had a breakaway, but her first touch was too strong, and Western goalkeeper Heather Delair smothered the ball.

In the 80th and final minute, Brown made the most of a third chance when she stole the ball 10 yards inside the midfield stripe and broke in alone. As Delair came out to challenge, Brown slid the ball into the net, setting off an ecstatic celebration on the City bench.

"I tried to make sure I didn't touch the ball too hard on that breakaway," said Brown, who as a freshman scored three times in a 4-3 victory last year over Western that eventually gave City its first title since 1992 and broke a string of seven straight championships for Western. "I tried to stay positive the whole game. "

It was a day of second chances for City (9-4-1). In previous years, Western (7-4-1) would have won the City title based on the regular season. Both teams finished with 6-1-1 league records and split the season series 1-1. But Western would have been awarded the championship based on a 2-1 aggregate in head-to-head goals.

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