Century rises early, then shines, 2-0

Two 1st-half goals spark win over Parkside, giving school its first boys crown

Class 2A boys soccer final

November 15, 2003|By Rich Scherr | Rich Scherr,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

The Century boys soccer team came into last night's Class 2A state final having gone to overtime seven times this season, including two playoff games that went to penalty kicks.

Facing Wicomico County's Parkside, however, the No. 15 Knights were able to put away their dramatic license early, taking control of the game with two goals in the first 43 minutes in a 2-0 win at UMBC.

"It was frustrating in the beginning of the season to go four overtimes in a row and to end the season with three overtimes in a row, but to win the state championship game ... you can't beat it," said Century coach Scott Smith.

In just its second season at the varsity level, Century (11-2-3) gave the Carroll County school its first boys state title. Century's girls soccer team also won a state title last night, defeating Glenelg to win its second straight crown.

Parkside (16-3) had won 14 straight games, averaging more than four goals a game during the stretch.

Both teams had their chances early.

About eight minutes into the game, the Knights came within inches of taking the lead when Jessi Glauser sent a cross toward the goal mouth, where teammate Kevin Chapman met it with a diving header that sailed just above the crossbar.

Then, with about 10:20 to play before halftime, Parkside got one of its best chances off Tim Miller's corner. Midfielder Nick Solano got a foot on the ball in the middle and aimed toward the corner of the net, forcing Century goalie Chris Jones to dive to his left for the fingertip save.

"They were dominating," said Century midfielder Andrew Delis. "The center of the field was theirs in the beginning of the game."

Near the end of the half, however, the Knights, going against a stiff breeze, finally managed to take the lead, thanks in part to UMBC's artificial turf.

The play started when Joel Brunson's throw-in from the corner bounced several times through the goal mouth. Forward Mike March, standing near the far post, got a piece of it, sending it back toward the middle, where Delis then beat goalie Matt Goodson to his right to make it 1-0 with 7:02 to play before halftime.

"That was just all hustle on [March's] part," said Delis. "I was just in the right spot at the right time."

Less than three minutes into the second half, Century extended its lead to 2-0 when, after Steve Romeo's corner kick got batted around in front of the goal, Knights back Kris Chinnery put it in from 10 yards out in front.

"[Being behind] definitely altered our game plan because we started getting into a little bit of a hurry," said Parkside co-coach Brian Hollamon. "In the second half, they were beating us to the ball and kind of taking control of the game."

Smith said Century's championship means even more, since it came on the same night as the girls' victory.

"Us coming back and doing the same thing ... that's fantastic," said Smith. "These kids worked hard all season, and [getting here] was obviously one of our goals. Before the game, I said, `You reached your goal. Now let's go out and achieve it.' "

Goals: C-Delis, Chinnery. Assist: C-March. Saves: P-Goodson 4; C-Jones 3. Half: C, 1-0.

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