St. Al, St. Joe go home empty-handed|[12/17/2005]

Published 12:00 am Monday, December 19, 2005

A controversial yellow card on St. Aloysius’ Matthew Jenkins led to a late tying goal for visiting Greenville St. Joe Friday night at Balzli Field.

The card on Jenkins came with just under five minutes to play. Chris Reifer’s penalty kick bounced off the post but on the Irish throw-in, Reifer kicked in a rebound, tying the game at 1-all.

St. Al had one last chance in the final seconds with a corner kick but two headers went no where and the two division rivals settled for a 1-1 tie.

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&#8220That’s just how the game flops,” said St. Al midfielder Adam Fulcher of the yellow card to Jenkins. &#8220It was a tough game.

&#8220After the ball hit the post, I thought I had cleared it, but they came back and got a goal off the throw in. You just can give someone like (Reifers) too many chances because he’ll finish.”

The good news for the Flashes (9-2-2) is that this was not the division game that counts. That will come in the rematch in Greenville on Jan. 9.

By then they hope to have a more consistent offense. St. Al scored within the first three minutes of the game but was held in check for the final 77 minutes and change.

&#8220That’s something we’ve got to fix. We score a goal in the first few minutes and then just slow down,” Fulcher said.

&#8220It was an even match but we just need to control things better on offense,” St. Al coach Jason Hopkins said. &#8220It’s going to come down to us beating Greenville-St. Joe to make the playoffs.”

Adam Thornton gave St. Al its quick lead off a 10-yard shot that was set up by an assist from John Buchman. The goal came 2 minutes and 8 seconds into the first half.

Bray Jones and Chris Guizerix had chances midway through the half but were turned away. St. Joe (6-2-2) then controlled the final 12 minutes of the half, getting eight shots on goal, including three off corner kicks.

Flashes keeper Patrick Karel made four saves during the Irish surge, including one quick reacting hand punch on a line drive from 30 yards out.

Karel had six more saves in the second half and finished with 11 for the game.

The Irish had 23 shots on goal compared to just 10 for the Flashes.

(G) St. Joe 2, St. Al 2

Emily Crawford’s goal with just five minutes to play allowed St. Joe to escape with the tie.

The Lady Flashes (5-3-1) took a 2-1 lead 16:45 into the second half when Taylor George roped in a 35-yard goal off a penalty kick.

St. Al saw four more chances at gaining a two-goal edge go by the wayside as George missed two shots while Andrea Harrison and Mary Beth Croisdale’s offerings were stopped by Lady Irish keeper Cathie Wrenn.

Following Crawford’s tying goal at the 35:41 mark, St. Al had one last chance for a winning goal but Marie Booth was just wide.

St. Joe (7-2-1) took a 1-0 lead at the 22:41 mark in the first half when LaToya Slay scored.

St. Al answered at the 28:05 mark when Haley Davis saw her 25-yard shot from a right-to-left angle get dropped into the goal by Wrenn.

The Lady Flashes are slated to return to action on Dec. 27 when Greenville Weston visits Balzli Field.