- Eyes On
Wapakoneta and St. Marys met six times in the previous three varsity boys soccer seasons â€” three times in the regular season and three times in the tournament.
The Roughriders won all three regular season matchups. And the Redskins exacted revenge on their biggest rival in the postseason, winning all three of those contests.
St. Marys continued its control of the regular season with a 3-0 shutout of the Redskins on Tuesday at Ryan Field.
If they meet again in postseason play, Roughriders first-year varsity coach Dave Ring doesnâ€™t plan on letting the trend continue.
â€śThe previous 10 years they didnâ€™t beat us in the playoffs,â€ť he said. â€śAnd they wonâ€™t this year.â€ť
Wapakoneta actually outshot the Roughriders on Tuesday. The Redskins fired 17 total shots, 11 on-goal, to 13 and 8 for St. Marys.
â€śWe knew this was a rivalry game so they were going to play tough,â€ť Ring said. â€śA of credit to Wapak. They played really hard.â€ť
But Wapak couldnâ€™t find the back of the net as the shots went just high or just wide.
â€śWe knew what they were going to do,â€ť Wapak coach Marc Dyrness said. â€śBut we didnâ€™t stop them. Weâ€™ll go back to work. We had attempts in the second half. We had a few in the first half. But again, weâ€™ve got a drought with it hitting the back of the net.â€ť
The St. Marys defense has allowed just eight goals all season.
â€śI just couldnâ€™t be prouder of the way weâ€™re playing defensively,â€ť Ring said. â€śAnd offensively weâ€™re getting the job done.â€ť
Junior Brennan Brown scored all three Roughrider goals.
As has been the case much of the season, the Redskins started slow and had to climb out of an early hole.
St. Marys took a 1-0 lead with 11:04 left in the first half as Brown dribbled through the middle of the Wapak defense, spun to evade the final defender, regained his balance and fired a wide-open shot from 10-yards out into the right side of the goal.
Just five minutes later, Brown made it 2-0 with another goal up the middle.
Brown put the match away 5:22 into the second half on a breakaway down the right side. One-on-one with goalkeeper Zach Holtzapple, Brown juked to his right. When Holtzapple moved to his left, Brown fired the shot back the other direction and into the left side of the net.
â€śHe (Brown) plays year-round and thatâ€™s the only sport he plays,â€ť Dyrness said. â€śHe spends a lot of time in the offseason working on his game.â€ť
Wapak was playing with an all-freshmen back row as Dyrness shuffled the lineup to try to get fresh legs on the offensive end. The Redskins dropped several players back on the defensive end.
â€śTheir style really doesnâ€™t set up so well for us,â€ť Ring said. â€śWe had to work at it. They did well dropping so many people behind the ball.
â€śBrennan Brown has been our scoring this year and he showed it again today. He is a player.â€ť
Wapak is now 5-6 on the season and 2-4 in the Western Buckeye League. St. Marys is 9-3 and 5-1.