Saints swamp Gators|Prep soccer

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Vicksburg had four chances in the final two minutes to pull out a draw against St. Andrew’s, but couldn’t get a shot to score and the Saints escaped with a 1-0 win Tuesday night at Memorial Stadium.

The loss drops Vicksburg to 3-2-1. The win was St. Andrew’s first in three matches.

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Gators coach Jason Bennett said he knows what his team will work on during today’s practice.

“We’ll work on finishing our shots,” Bennett said. “A 1-0 loss to a team that is a state championship contender, though, is not bad. We beat them last year 2-1. We had a couple of chances at the end. They turned us around on one play and scored. I don’t like to give up anything near post because it puts the keeper in a bad spot.”

That’s what the Saints’ Timothy Harper did midway through the second half. He split two Gator defenders and then sent a cross kick from the right side into the net for the game’s only goal.

Vicksburg’s Perry Tolliver appeared to have scored a couple of minutes earlier, but the ball actually bounded off a back post and went behind the net. Chucky Hayden nearly got it back when he sent a mid-level laser 55 yards that St. Andrew’s keeper Ben Collins caught to keep the game scoreless.

Vicksburg didn’t get any more good chances until the final minutes. Keaton Jones had the first shot when he sent a low liner that Collins dove in front of to knock away. Jones then had an open shot near the box, but it went wide. Hayden got off a shot that Collins stopped and the last Gator chance came from Tony Davis and it also sailed wide.

“I think a draw may have been the fair result because they had a lot of chances right at the end,” St. Andrew’s coach Chad Johnson said. “It was absolutely a tough game. They had two kids (Tolliver and Hayden) who were very fast and we had to stay on our toes,”

Bennett says Hayden and Tolliver can be a force for the Gators as the season goes on.

“They just need to play better together,” he said.

(G) St. Andrew’s 3, VHS 0

Missy Gators coach Kevin Manton had two simple words to describe his team’s performance against the defending Class 1A-3A state champs.

“No offense. No offense. We didn’t do anything. They out-desired us. We had a great day on Saturday and then we follow it up and play like this. We’ve had our moments this season and tonight wasn’t one of them.” Manton said.

St. Andrew’s (3-0) got a first half goal from Melissa Holy to take a 1-0 lead. Hannah Holliford scored the second Lady Saints goal early in the second half.

Holy came back to make it a 3-0 final, scoring off a deflection.

“Vicksburg beat us last year and it was one of only three losses for us,” St. Andrew’s coach Brandon Williams said. St. Andrew’s defeated Our Lady Academy of Bay St. Louis in last February’s finals in Clinton.

Vicksburg falls to 3-2-1 with the loss.

“We didn’t get to first touched balls. This may be another dose of reality for them,” Manton added.


Contact Jeff Byrd at