Bulldog girls win Sonoma Halloween Classic
Published: Thursday, November 1, 2012 at 10:49 a.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, November 1, 2012 at 10:49 a.m.
The Petaluma United under-12 Bulldog girls won the Sonoma Halloween Classic tournament.
In game No. 1 against the San Carlos Explosion White, Jacqueline Clarke scored first with a left-footed shot off an assist from Lauren Langston. Gizela Carranza made it 2-0 when she received a pass with her back to the goal just outside the box, and turned and fired a rocket past the keeper. The final goal came off a corner kick which Aubrey Babala received near the far post and served up to Samantha Dedrickson who headed it in for the goal, and a 3-0 final score.
In game No. 2 against the San Carlos Explosion Blue, the Bulldogs scored quickly with a lob kick by Langston over the goalkeeper that bounced into the goal for a 1-0 lead. In case the ball did not cross the goal line, Kaileigh Pate was also running to follow it into the goal. Carranza then added a left-footed shot over the keeper to make it 2-0 before the half.
Attacking mids Dedrickson and Babala served up some nice balls wide to the wingers, while forwards Crystal Carreras and Megan Hanley were disruptive up front to keep defenders on their heels. Hanley capped the scoring when she poked in a goal off a corner kick that was bouncing around the box to seal a 3-0 win.
Game No. 3 against the Vacaville Lady Pirates was a dog fight, with both teams playing very physical and flying recklessly to the ball. The Bulldogs had early chances to score, with crosses from Carranza, Clarke, Langston and Carreras, but it wasn't until the middle of the second half that Hanley fired a shot from the 18 for the only score of the game.
Bulldog keeper Samantha Schaefer had a great block in the waning moments, and then on the ensuing corner kick, she caught the ball high in the air to preserve the win. For the fourth time in as many tournaments, the Bulldogs earned a trip to the finals.
In the championship game against the host team Sonoma Fury, the Bulldogs came out on fire, controlling the ball with pinpoint passing and firing off shots. The Bulldogs got on the board when midfielder Lilly Catarozoli tapped in a goal off a corner kick that was bouncing at the six for a 1-0 lead.
Moments later, Carranza fired a shot from outside the 18 through the goalkeeper’s hands for a 2-0 lead.
The big story, however, was the play of the entire defense, which did not allow a single goal in the tournament. The backs, led by the rotation of Delia Reif, Hannah Bauer, Lauren Doran, Emily Armas and Pate, were rock solid and did not give much to opposing attackers. Bauer and Doran were a strong combination in the middle, winning several balls, while Armas, Reif and Pate turned in great performances outside. Defensive mids Catarozoli, Hanley and Babala also defended the middle very well, while goalkeeper Schaefer helped her own cause by turning in amazing saves when she had to.
Overall, it was a total team effort by the Bulldogs outscoring its opponents 9-0, with six different players scoring goals, on its way to the tournament championship.
Second at Santa Cruz
In an earlier tournament, the Bulldogs took second place in the Santa Cruz Classic.
In game No. 1 against the Santa Cruz Jaws, the Bulldogs jumped ahead 1-0 on Lauryn Langston’s goal fromsix yards out. She then added another goal on a shot that curved in after hitting the right post to give the Bulldogs a 2-0 lead. Moments later, Megan Hanley scored off a corner kick to up the lead to 3-0. The Bulldogs added a final goal, that started with a crossfield pass from midfielder Samantha Dedrickson to Emily Armas, who switched it back across to left winger Crystal Carreras, who then laid a perfect through ball splitting the defenders, that right winger Jacqueline Clarke ran into and scored for a 4-0 Bulldog win.
In game No.2, the Bulldogs played very physical against a strong, physical PV United team. The Bulldogs’ defense, led by backs Lauren Doran, Delia Reif, Hannah Bauer and Armas, and defensive mids Lilly Catarozoli and Gizela Carranza, was solid. and kept pace with the bigger opponent. Goalkeeper Samantha Schaefer added a couple of nice saves.
In the second half, the Bulldogs controlled the ball and had several scoring chances. Midfielders Aubrey Babala, Kaileigh Pate and Dedrickson consistently fed through balls to the forwards, who kept attacking the goal and firing shots. The Bulldogs had several near-misses, including breakaways, shots hitting off the posts and off the crossbar and spectacular saves by the opposing goalie. The game ended in a 0-0 tie.
In the deciding game for the right to move on to the finals, the Bulldogs faced the unbeaten Folsom Phenoms, winner of last year’s tournament. It was a defensive and physical battle on both sides.The Bulldogs played very tight coverage against the high-scoring Folsom team. It was scoreless through the middle of the second half when Langston broke loose and had a clear shot at the goal, but was fouled in the box. She then nailed the penalty kick for a 1-0 lead.
The defense did the rest to maintain the 1-0 shutout, earning the Bulldogs a spot in the finals.
In the championship game against the Eureka Strikers, the Bulldogs defense was caught off guard in the first minute when a Eureka striker dribbled uncontested inside the six for an easy goal. Just minutes later, Eureka again scored on another tap-in goal from close to make it 2-0.
Playing from behind and needing goals, the Bulldogs went to a more attacking formation the rest of the game. They had a few chances, but with a more exposed defense, they gave up two more goals and eventually lost to a strong Eureka team 4-0.
For the Bulldogs, this was the third second-place tournament finish.
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