Rosewood-Spring Creek can't decide winner
By Rob Craig
Published in Sports on October 2, 2007 3:28 PM
SEVEN SPRINGS -- Over 100 minutes of soccer action which included countless missed scoring opportunities concluded in near darkness with no winner Monday evening at Spring Creek.
The Gators' Harold Bravo collected a goal four minutes into the second overtime session and the Eagles benefited from an own goal a few minutes later to create a 1-1 tie at "The Swamp." Each team exited with 0-1-1 worksheets in Class 1-A Carolina Conference play.
"We looked a step slow today," said Rosewood coach Daniel Mitchell. "I didn't think we had the level of intensity that we needed, but we hung in there and at least made something happen at the very end to tie it up."
Rosewood (1-8-2 overall) appeared headed for its second consecutive overtime loss. Goalie Will Grantham made his lone mistake of the night when he misjudged a shot. The ball bounced over his head and Bravo headed into the open net.
"I was excited," said Spring Creek coach Jesse Craig. "I thought we were finally going to put away a win."
Playing with a sense of urgency that had been lacking earlier in the game, the Eagles fought back. Keeping the ball on the Gators' side of the field, Rosewood forced a corner kick with a minute remaining.
The ensuing kick curled in on goalie Angel Sanchez who made a finger-tip save. The rebound stayed loose and was eventually headed by a Spring Creek player into the goal tying the game.
"We just pushed up with numbers, tried to get a bunch of people in the box and hoped for the best," said Mitchell.
While Mitchell, Rosewood's players and its fans were ecstatic with the goal, both teams felt as if they had missed a golden opportunity. Both teams wasted scoring chances for 105-plus minutes until the hectic ending.
Spring Creek took control early, maintaining possession and putting shots on target. Thanks to the sterling play of Grantham -- who collected 16 saves -- the Gators were held scoreless.
"Will played his best game of the season," said Mitchell. "He came off his line well and made some outstanding saves."
In the second half, Spring Creek (0-7-1, 0-1-1) appeared to have broken through.
Vasquez sent a shot just over Grantham's finger tips and into the upper corner of the goal. However, an inadvertent whistle by an official had caused Rosewood to hesitate on the play.
Following the apparent score, a lengthy conversation between the three officials transpired where it was ruled to be no goal.
"The play wasn't stopped until the kid scored the goal, but that's up to the referee," said Craig. "They call the game, we have to coach it and the players have to play it."
Rosewood's best chance at finishing may have come in the first overtime. Midfielder Zach Behrend aggressively attacked the goal and sent a shot in on Sanchez who made one of his 13 saves, but lost the ball as he and Behrend collided.
No Eagles player was in the vicinity to clean up and score.
"(Zach) was the only one that went after the ball," said Mitchell. "The ball popped loose and if we had someone else playing aggressive, then we could have won it there."
Rosewood visits North Johnston on Wednesday, while Spring Creek travels to Ayden-Grifton.
"There were a bunch of missed opportunities throughout the game," said Craig. "Both teams had chances to capitalize, we just didn't finish the ball."
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