Margaretville boys head to Crossover

By John Bernhardt
Phase One of the Margaretville Blue Devils 2012 boys’ soccer season is in the books. The Blue Devils closed the door on a stellar regular season last week by finishing unbeaten at 13-0-2.
Phase Two will unfold Saturday at the Wright National Soccer Campus in Oneonta when the Upper Division Champions face Mountain Division Champion South Kortright for the Delaware League title.

Two hard fought, season ending DL contests serve as harbingers for hard-nosed soccer dates still to come. Margaretville edged Downsville, 2-1, at home on Wednesday before finishing the regular season with a 2-2 tie in Davenport.

The first two shots, one for Margaretville and the other for Downsville, banged off the uprights Wednesday night. Sam Gill’s strike from deep along the right sideline rang the uprights less than two minutes into the game. Downsville returned the favor eight minutes later.
Matt VanValkenburg picked a Kyle Short cross out of the air, pushing the ball off his head and off a charging Downsville goalie David Doig’s back and into the nets for the game’s first score.
Margaretville nearly added to the lead seconds before the halftime horn when a Kyle Short header off a Sam Gill cross, caromed off the right pole.

The Blue Devils’ second score came at 20:52 of the second half. Colby Russo dug a ball out between a pair of Downsville defenders deep down the left sideline then directed a cross at Cooper Reither positioned in the middle of the box. Reither settled the pass then rifled a shot high into the right hand corner for the second Blue Devils score.

Downsville scrambled hard down the stretch. An instinctive hockey-like Mitch Hull kick save prevented an Eagle goal just 50 seconds after the Reither score.

Scoring chances
The Eagles kept Hull busy during the final 10 minutes. Justin Baxter grounded a direct kick from three steps beyond the box past the upper flank of a Margaretville defensive wall toward the middle of the box. Dayton Frey streaked uncontested to the ball from the left wing to register the lone Downsville goal.

Margaretville raced to a 2-0 halftime lead Friday in Davenport. Matt VanValkenburg scored both tallies using assists from Short and Caleb Todd.
Davenport rallied with second half scores from Corey Hartman and Paul Clark to earn the 2-2 tie.
Expect Saturday’s Crossover Championship game to be donnybrook. The Rams and the Blue Devils played to a scoreless tie in regulation earlier in the season in a game played in Margaretville. A Kyle Short breakaway goal was the overtime game winner for Margaretville. The lost was SK’s only misstep in Delaware League play this season.

They go about their work quietly, often unnoticed, but the Roxbury Rocket boys’ soccer team has pieced together a solid 2012 campaign. The Rockets shut out Gilboa, 3-0, to finish the regular season with three consecutive wins and an 8-5 record. The Rockets can use an 11- day pause to catch their breath and get ready for their second season in Section IV Sectional play.

Fast and hungry for the ball, junior Kris Walcott’s offensive game and his confidence continues to soar. Walcott ended the regular season on a high note by scoring two times in the win over Gilboa.

It was a Walcott cross that found Garrett Hinkley six yards in front of the nets that set up the game’s deciding goal. Hinkley converted the score just four minutes into the contest.

Brandon Beauvis and Spencer Hinkley assisted the Walcott goals that followed.