South Carroll's title wait is over, 4-0

Cavaliers top Key, clinch county, end Liberty reign

Boys soccer

High Schools

October 22, 2002|By Jeff Seidel | Jeff Seidel,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

Several members of the South Carroll soccer team have played together since they were young kids. They've waited a long time to accomplish something special, and the Cavaliers finally did that last night.

Kevin Weschler and Jonnie Jenkins gave South Carroll a quick advantage with early goals, and the visiting Cavaliers went on to clinch the Carroll County championship with a 4-0 victory over Francis Scott Key.

The win breaks Liberty's long hold on the county title. The Lions had won five of the past six county championships, but South Carroll (7-4-1, 5-0-1) opened the door with a thrilling double-overtime win against Liberty last week and a tie would have locked up the title last night.

"Our team has been together for I don't know how many years," Jenkins said. "We had a great time tonight."

The Cavaliers were the only county team to go without a loss this season. South Carroll coach Wes Haroldson said his experienced team -- 10 seniors -- played a solid game against a stubborn Francis Scott Key squad that found numerous scoring chances.

The Eagles kept firing, just missing on several occasions and forcing South Carroll goalies Ryan Webb (five saves, first half) and Timothy Ferguson (five saves, second half) to work hard at times. But Key (4-7, 0-3) just couldn't stop the potent Cavaliers' offense from scoring.

South Carroll made one tactical adjustment, putting three players up front instead of its usual two, to bolster its scoring chances. If Key goalie Matt Baile hadn't turned in an impressive 12-save effort, the final score could have been a lot worse.

Weschler scored the first goal 2:30 into the game, making a nice run down the left wing, getting past a Key defender and firing a 15-yard shot inside the far post. Jenkins made it 2-0 with 20:41 left in the half, leaping and heading in a curving ball from Travis Skinner.

"We were very patient tonight," Haroldson said, moments before being doused by his players. "[The early] goals kind of helped set the tone."

The Eagles appeared to slice the lead in half when Brad Thompson put a beautiful header into the goal with just under 31 minutes remaining, but the officials waved it off, calling Key for offsides.

"That one goal coming back hurt us," Francis Scott Key coach Steve Smith said.

Adam Devilbiss sealed the win for South Carroll with 15:40 left, finishing a nice pass from Mike Aaron. Brandon Nee scored the final goal.

South Carroll's future is up in the air. The Cavaliers aren't sure if they'll receive a bye in the Class 3A West Region. In fact, they don't even know when they play next. But they do know they've finally won a county title.

"It all came together for us this year," Jenkins said.

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