High School Soccer:
Thursday, October 28, 1999
By Forrest Robleto
Rudy Kolbach's eleventh seeded Delran Bears (11-4) were hoping to upset Viktor Dombrovsky's sixth seeded Cherry Hill East Cougars (9-3-1) in the Coaches Tournament, and for a while it looked as though they might. Cherry Hill started off fairly strong. Sixteen minutes into the game Rachael Sterling fed a near perfect pass to Amanda, the younger Kravitz, who beat Betsy Kennedy the Delran keeper to take a one to nothing lead. Delran then turned up the heat and the rest of the first half was fairly even. Cherry Hill led in shots 6-3 for the half.
Delran looked better in the second half. With 26:54 left in the half, Cougar's keeper Carolyn Snyder was apparently injured after a collision with one of the Delran keepers and was lying on the field. Both teams stopped momentarily expecting a whistle but when none was forthcoming, the Cougar's defense scrambled to cover the front of the net. A flurry of quick passes from the speedy Carly Lloyd to Cheryl Vermes gave it to Mary Casale who put it home. After a brief discussion, the referees announced that the goal would stand. The first half ended tied at one. The shots in the second period actually favored Delran 7-3, for a regulation time total of 10 for Delran and 9 for the Cougars.
Coaches' Tournament games have unusual tiebreakers. Teams tied after two 10 minute sudden death overtimes are decided using state tournament rules but do not involve penalty kicks. Instead it consists of two attacking players attempting to score against one defender and one goalkeeper in a thirty-second shootout using one half of the field. This process is repeated till either team scores.
Delran had much the better part of the first 10-minute overtime. The speed of Delran's Carly Lloyd had Jen Padlo, the rock of the Cherry Hill defense, running hard. Cherry Hill had but one good hard shot from Meredith Sobel from about 30 yards out. Betsy Kennedy, the Bear's keeper, handled it easily. At about one minute left in the first overtime, Cherry Hill was awarded a direct kick but Rachael Sterling tipped it over the top of the net, high enough that Betsy Kennedy couldn't reach it. As the second overtime got underway, the play started to move towards the middle of the field as the blistering speed of Carly Lloyd dropped off a step.
In the second overtime period, there were no shots at all until Danielle DiBruno fed the ball up to a breaking Marissa Kravitz who had two defenders very close. Marissa accelerated past the defenders and found herself with only Betsy Kennedy in front of the goal. Marissa made no mistake and sent a hard low shot out of reach of the keeper to give the Cougars the overtime win and give Meredith Sobel a much deserved win for her birthday.
Photos by Forrest Robleto
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