One played at Wapakoneta’s Ryan Field, the other at Bath High School.
Both came away with sectional soccer losses.
The Elida boys dropped a 2-1 decision to St. Marys at Wapakoneta, while the Lady Bulldogs fell 3-0 to Bath.
In the boys matchup, Gaerid Littler scored the only tally for the Bulldogs, while Brennan Brown and Zac Nelson got the goals for the Roughriders.
St. Marys outshot Elida 10-3: Drew Laing saved eight for the Orange and Black, while Luke Leffel had two for their foe.
At Bath, the Wildkittens dominated their foe 16-2 in shots on-goal, with Alyssa Manley, Julie Evans and Jocelyn Ayers netting goals for the host team.
Rachel Foust was credited with seven saves for the Lady Bulldogs, while Audrey Brandon had two for Bath.
CELINA - Thursday’s Division II district quarterfinal was a matchup between a team in its 12th year of girls varsity soccer, St. Marys, and a team in its third year, Van Wert.
The Cougars were surprisingly competitive but the aggressiveness, speed and skill of the Roughriders eventually paid off in a 5-1 win.
St. Marys advances with a 13-3-1 record, while Van Wert ends at 4-13-0.
The season was a big improvement for Van Wert, which didn’t win a match in its first two seasons.
“For us to win three league games — and we came in seventh (in the Western Buckeye League) — is good for us,” said coach Rich Nouza. “Something to build on. We were in a lot of games. Tonight, the score was 5-1 but we were competitive. From where we were last year to this year, it’s night and day. They came together as a team. Our teamwork was better. Our communication was better. Our passing was better. I’m happy with that.”
St. Marys got its first goal 29 seconds into the match on a dandy 25-yarder from the right side at a sharp angle by sophomore forward Skylar Liming. The ball bent gradually toward the goal and found the upper left corner out of reach of sophomore goalkeeper Emily Bair.
Although the Riders continued to pepper Bair with shots (18 in the first half, of which 9 were on-goal), they didn’t find the cords again until the 9:08 mark when senior midfielder Kelly Heitkamp took a cross and kicked it in from point-blank range to give St. Marys a 2-0 halftime lead.
By that point, the Cougars had gotten off only three shots all from long distance, two of them on-goal.
Memorial started the second half similarly to the first. With 37:46 left, senior midfielder Molly Albert launched one from the left side at a sharp angle and the ball curled into the upper right corner of the net to make it 3-0, St. Marys.
At 27:56, junior forward Kristen Dammeyer raced Bair to a ball right in front of the goal, Dammeyer winning — barely — and thus finding an open net.
At the 24:02 mark, the Cougs got a goal when quick and clever junior forward Hannah Hulbert stole the ball and launched a 40-yard pass to the middle where junior speedster midfielder Amanda Clay’s foot caught it. Clay found herself 1-on-1 with Roughrider senior goalie Paige Dicus. Clay smacked a grounder into the left corner of the goal to close the gap to 4-1.
St. Marys got its fifth goal at 5:07 on a point-blank shot by freshman forward Courtney Helmlinger.
“(Defensively) we were resilient back there,” said Nouza. “The girls played hard. They were under a lot of pressure, obviously. They (the Riders) were sending a lot of people up. We were trying to stay compact in the back, which we did for the most part, but they scored some nice goals.”
The Riders ended up with 35 shots, of which 19 were on-goal. They had 10 corner kicks but converted none. Dicus had only three saves.
Van Wert got off only seven shots, four on-goal. The Cougars had only one corner kick in the game. Bair had a busy day, recording 12 saves.
“Emily made some nice plays,” added Nouza. “She was real smart, especially with her distribution. That helped our counterattack a great deal. That’s one thing we wanted to do was for her to get the ball and get it up to the 18 quickly and either punt the ball and get it over the top of the defense or distribute it to the outside so we could counterattack; she did a good job with that. She did a good job of smothering some balls. She was very active.”