On the field Avon dropped a 3-1 decision to West Shore Conference foe Rocky River.
Prior to making the trip to Rocky River, the Eagles coach Tony Dimacchia found out he would be without his starting goalkeeper Holly Kraus for at least the next two matches after the senior was determined to have suffered a concussion in a previous game.
In her place junior Kayla Wysocki made her first start in goal, making 10 saves in a losing effort.
“Kayla’s effort was tremendous tonight. We just had a couple of breaks go against us tonight,” Dimacchia said.
Rocky River (8-0-1, 3-0) scored its first goal in the eighth minute off of a throw-in by McKenna Klodnick that sailed from 20 yards away from goal into the box where Wysocki had it bounce off her hands into the net.
Avon (2-2-2, 1-1-1) tied the match in the 31st minute on Megan Garner’s sixth goal of the year. The scoring began on the other side of midfield when junior midfielder Lauren Kapalko stole a ball from a Pirates midfielder and played the ball down the touch line to forward Nicole Chabot whose centering pass found Garner in the box. Garner beat Rocky River goalkeeper Kim Leitch to the ball and drove it into the back of the net.
“Rocky River is a heck of a team but I thought we did a lot of the well tonight. We were able to control the ball a lot in the midfield and our defense was outstanding,” Dimacchia said.
The Eagles out-shot the Pirates 14-13 but were unable to score another goal. Trouble finishing on scoring opportunities has been a reoccurring theme for an Avon that has been held to two or fewer goals in five of its first six matches.
“We went with a totally new formation tonight, a 4-3-3, trying to generate more offense. It’s been disappointing at times. We have had a couple of 0-0 games that we dominated and tonight we had our chances. We just need to get better at finishing,” Dimacchia said.
The Pirates took the lead for good in the 38th minute when Stephanie Davis scored her eighth goal of the season on an assist by Sarah Molina.
Molina scored the final Rocky River goal on a penalty kick in the 60th minute. The Pirates were awarded the penalty after forward Hallie McCue was tripped from behind within the 18-meter box.
It won’t get easier for the Eagles on Saturday when they travel to perennial Division II power Hathaway Brown before next week’s WSC showdown with Bay. Avon will be with Kraus, who was the first-team, all WSC goalkeeper in 2010.
“This is why we carry 18 girls on the team. I was really impressed by the way Kayla played tonight and we just need to step it up on the offensive side. This is a really tough two weeks for us but this is what will make us a good tournament team,” Dimacchia said.
Rocky River 3, Avon 1
- Goals: (RR) Klodnick (8th minute), Davis (38th minute), Molina (60th minute PK); (A) Garner (31at minute)
- Assists: (RR) Molina; (A) Chabot
- Goalkeepers: (RR) Leitch 12 saves; (A) Wysocki 10 saves
- Fouls: Rocky River 10, Avon 6
- Corner Kicks: Rocky River 5, Avon 3
- Offsides: Rocky River 4, Avon 1
- Cards: None
Contact Todd Shapiro at 329-7135 or email@example.com.