STOPPAGE TIME: Brother Martin edges Griffins
GEISMAR – It only took one goal for Brother Martin to knock off Dutchtown in a Division I quarterfinal playoff game Tuesday afternoon at Griffin Field.
Darryl Phillips’ goal in the 18 minute provided the difference in the 1-0 decision as the fifth-seeded Crusaders (20-5-3) move on to face top-seed Jesuit in the semifinals. No. 4 seed Dutchtown ends the season with a 21-4-3 overall record.
“It played out like we anticipated,” Dutchtown head coach Larry Chambless said. “We knew they had several skilled players and are full of premier players. We expected them to swing the ball around and get numbers forward. Our plan was to force shots from distance and angles. We expected them to have more possession and we looked to counter quickly with our speed. They didn’t have quality opportunities but we couldn’t generate the one that we needed.
“They were just fortunate with that one ball. I am not even sure if the guy expected it to be a shot but it found that back post. It was just not a ball you see go in very often. They happened to find the right place and we didn’t.”
Caleb Clanton played the ball behind Dutchtown to Phillips who turned it into the back post for Brother Martin, who defeated Dutchtown earlier in the season, as well.
“We knew they were going to be a tough team, especially here at home on a small field with conditions not particularly great,” Brother Martin head coach Louie Smothermon said. “I felt like we had a lot of chances in the first half that we missed and they had a couple of good opportunities as well. Until late in the second half, we were just trying to play straight up because the chances were coming and we weren’t being threatened too much. I am just happy that we are able to go on to the next round.
“For most of the game, we tried to get a lot of numbers forward and as soon as we would lose the ball match up with their two strong strikers to make sure we had them covered because we didn’t want one on one matchups with them. It is always good to be up one but it is dangerous to be up one, too, because anything can happen at any time.”
Dutchtown’s forwards Ricky Lawrence and Ryan Reid did get their chances but were never able to capitalize as Brother Martin owned possession for most of the game and the Griffins were forced to play defense leaving them up top alone.
The Crusaders took the final seven attempts of the second half with Griffin goalkeeper Adam Pittman stopping four of them. Bryce Luquet’s free kick just outside the 18 was caught by Pittman after a foul by Caleb Alexander on Phillips. Pittman also gathered two header attempts before grabbing Quinto Schultz’s header off Jordan Scott’s corner kick.
Tyler Sarrazin got near the goal for Dutchtown in the second half but his attempt was stopped by goalkeeper Nathan Dean. Lloyd Johnson’s rebound off a throw in was wide left shortly after for the Griffins as only 11 total shots were taken in the second half including a span of none over 10 minutes.
Dutchtown’s last chance came on Lawrence’s free kick after a foul on Reid that cleared the Crusaders’ wall but was grabbed by Dean.
The Griffins say goodbye to six seniors who helped lead them to consecutive trips to the quarterfinals including Lawrence, Johnson, Colin Poche, Grant Auzenne, Conner Fryoux, Kramer Ritchie and Jordan Williams.
“It is disappointing every time you lose but there is only one team in the playoffs that ends their season without a loss and that is the state champion,” Chambless said. “Everybody runs into a brick wall except them.”