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Marietta, Warren girls soccer teams win sectional crowns

Photo by Jordan Holland Marietta's Kristen Pfaff (20) takes a shot during a high school girls sectional final soccer match against Jackson Saturday at Jerry Brock Field in Devola. Marietta won, 3-1.

DEVOLA — The Marietta High girls soccer team defended its home pitch.

The Tigers defeated Jackson 3-1 Saturday night at Jerry Brock Field to earn a Division II sectional championship. Marietta, which improved to 13-3-1 on the year, will take on Unioto Thursday in the district semifinals.

“It means we get to go on,” Marietta head coach Jeff Price said of winning the sectional. “It’s nice. We really want to see if we can go further on.”

Unioto bested Marietta 5-2 earlier this season.

“We played them at their place earlier this year,” Price said. “They’re a good team. They probably should have been the No. 1 seed. If we play well, we can do it.”

Courtney Schuck scored two goals, her 18th and 19th of the season, and Chloe Chen had two assists to power the Tigers against the Ironladies.\

“We hustled,” Price said. “That team fought the whole way, and they were physical. They weren’t giving up ever. It was just a matter of out-fighting them.”

Schuck scored early off a Chen assist, making it 1-0 at the 35:13 mark in the first half.

With 12:20 to go in the half, Katie Mannix stretched Marietta’s lead to 2-0, getting a shot past Jackson goal keeper Mattie Walburn, who stumbled on the play.

Jackson (12-6) responded quickly, getting a goal from Kirtsten Evans at the 10:42 mark to cut it to 2-1.

Jackson was hoping to go into halftime down one, but Schuck didn’t allow it. She took a pass from Chen, got past a charging Walburn and put a touch into the back of the net. That made it 3-1 at the break.

“That’s big,” Price said of the Tigers’ third goal. “You have maintain your pressure. You don’t want to give them too much help.”

Nobody scored in the second half, but there was still plenty of action. Things got a bit chippy between the two sides, and each team had a player receive a yellow card.

“It got physical in a way it probably shouldn’t have,” Price said. “That happens.”

Marietta dominated possession of the ball for most of the match, finishing with 12 shots on goal and 10 corner kicks. Walburn made nine saves for Jackson while Marietta keeper Jocelyn Rings had one save.

“At different points, they all (stood out),” Price said of his team. “That’s the nice thing. There were great passes. There probably should have been a lot more goals. Their goal keeper did a very good job. She was good. But at points, everybody showed up.”

The Tigers, who also won their third straight East Central Ohio League championship this season, now have a district title in their sights. They’re going to have to get through Unioto in the semis first.

“I’m just glad we’re going on,” Price said. “I think the girls showed up tonight a lot better than they have in a couple previous games, and that’s what we needed. We’re going to have to pick it up another step if we want to go further.”

Warren 4, Waverly 3 (OT)

VINCENT — Payton Alloway’s golden goal secured a sectional championship for Warren in the Warriors’ 4-3 victory over Waverly Saturday.

Knotted at 3-all at the end of regulation, Alloway took a pass from Taylor Sloan and and got her shot off past the goalie for the win. Warren, now 11-3-4, will play Fairfield Union in Thursday’s district semifinal.

The match started just as it ended, with a goal by Alloway, to make it 1-0 in favor of the Warriors.

After Waverly (14-3-1) tied it at 1-1, which was the score at halftime.

In the second half, Sophie Cochran was fouled outside the left side of the 18-yard box to set up a direct kick by Alysa Pinkerton, which she drilled into the back of the net to put the Warriors ahead 2-1.

Once again, the Tigers found the equalizer to make it 2-2.

After a Warren shot was saved and deflected by the Waverly keeper, Macie Smith recovered the loose ball and booted it into the goal to make it 3-2 Warren.

After holding that lead for seven minutes, Warren watched as Waverly, for the third time in the contest, produced the game-tying goal.

In OT, Sloan’s cross to Alloway resulted in the golden goal for head coach Andy Pinkerton’s squad.

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