SD gets landmark soccer win

Published 9:50 am Thursday, October 15, 2015

South Davie’s boys soccer team had lost five straight meetings to Ellis and was trailing at halftime 2-0, so you couldn’t have liked the Tigers’ chances of solving the Ellis riddle on Oct. 6.

But the visiting Tigers stormed back for a stunning victory, winning 5-4 behind a four-goal effort by Danny Torres.

One day earlier, the Jaguars and host Lexington tied 2-2. Midfielder Zachary Moore had both goals, including a game-tying score in the first half off Luke Stillson’s corner kick. The CK went to Owen Gulledge, who passed it to Jake Hill. Hill got the ball to Moore.

In the second half, Lexington regained a 2-1 lead, but Moore’s team-high fifth goal tied the game again.

“After no practice due to rain, the boys played really well,” said coach Leah Reynolds, who gave credit to goalie Joey Boyle and defenders Davis Speas and Jesse Hernandez. “(Those three) made great saves throughout the game.”

One day later, South came from behind to beat Ellis for the first time since 2012. The Tigers also handed Ellis its first loss of the season. In the previous five meetings, the Jaguars had hammered South by a combined score of 26-2, including a 2-0 decision on Sept. 16.

Ellis (2-1-1) had its way in the first half, taking a 2-0 lead on goals by Jonas Frank and Stillson.

“I was extremely proud of the way they were playing, especially after just playing Lexington the day before,” Reynolds said.

“Ellis dominated us in the first half,” South coach Russell Hilton said.

The Tigers (2-6), who had scored seven goals in seven games, came out of nowhere in the second half, finishing with their most goals in 12 games. Manny Granadero, who scored off a corner kick that deflected off an Ellis defensive player, and Torres lifted South to a 2-2 tie.

Charlie Starns’ first goal of the season gave Ellis a 3-2 lead. Torres, with a nice pass from Alex Lyons, tied it at 3. Granadero missed a penalty kick for South, but the goalie was whistled for taking three steps off his line before Granadero kicked – so South was awarded a second try. Torres took the PK this time and buried it to give South a 4-3 lead.

Starns struck again to forge the game’s third tie. With five minutes left, Lyons found Torres in the box, and Torres’ fourth goal gave South its first win in the series since a 6-1 score in ‘12.

“We came out fired up and aggressive in the second half,” Hilton said. “The second half was the best we have played all year. The boys worked well together. We are making vast improvements each and everyday.”

North Davie’s boys lost 9-0 to visiting Starmount on Oct. 5. The Wildcats sank to 0-6.

South Davie’s girls lost 4-2 at Ellis on Oct. 6, but it did not feel like a loss to coach Louise Diemer, who watched her team get leveled 9-0 by the Jags on Sept. 16.

“My girls made some giant strides,” Diemer said. “Everybody stepped up and played a fantastic game. We are so proud of them and their improvement.”

Madison Smith of unbeaten Ellis (3-0) scored the first two goals of the game. South fought back to tie as Alexis Riddle scored on an assist from Karen Razo and Razo scored on an assist from Riddle. Addyson Cox finished a breakaway to give Ellis a 3-2 halftime advantage.

“Coach Fanning and I were ecstatic at halftime and did not want to say anything that would change the mood,” Diemer said. “After being mercied 9-0 by them last game, this 3-2 at halftime was awesome.”

“South has improved since our last meeting, which made for a great game,” Reynolds said.

Ellis made sure there would be no upset, however, as Emma Helton of the Jaguars scored the only goal of the second half.

“In the second half, I switched players around a bit to see if we could get some better plays,” Reynolds said. “Our defense and midfield was doing all they could to keep the ball out of Ellis’ goal area.”

“We had many chances to score again, but could not capitalize,” Diemer said.

North Davie’s girls were outscored 3-0 in the final 27 minutes to suffer a 5-2 home loss to Starmount on Oct. 5. The teams tied 3-3 on Sept. 17.

Amber Strader and Blakely Freeman connected to put North on the board first. Freeman made a beautiful pass across the face of the goal, and Strader one-touched it into the net.

The Rams surged to a 2-1 halftime lead, but Strader’s team-high eighth goal forced a tie at 2. But Starmount took off from there, starting their game-closing push two minutes after Strader’s second goal.

North (1-4-2) was belted 6-0 by visiting Forbush on Oct. 6. The Wildcats contained Forbush for a while, but the Falcons scored twice late in the first half and pulled away over the final 30 minutes.