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For the week of Oct. 13, 1999 through Oct. 19, 1999

Wood River boys rally past Cutthroats 3-2

Tense soccer match decided in second half


Some called it one of the best-played Wood River-Community School boys’ soccer games—one filled with admirable skills, crisp passing hook-ups and a burning desire to win by both teams.

But, on a breezy, sun-splashed Saturday afternoon in Hailey, it was the defending State A-2 champions from Wood River with a little more gas in the tank in the decisive second half of the non-conference battle.

Wood River, trailing 2-0 in the first half, kept its composure and stormed back with three unanswered goals to prevail 3-2 and hand The Community School its first loss of the 1999 soccer campaign.

The 38th renewal of The Valley Cup ended with Wood River (14-2-2 against the Cutthroats in Hailey) winning for the fifth straight time and stretching its unbeaten streak to 13 games.

Senior midfielder James Cordes steadied Wood River and narrowed the Cutthroat lead to 2-1 by scoring on a header from junior forward Jason Southward with less than five minutes left in the first half. A corner kick by Jess Kiesel led to the goal.

Cordes returned the favor seven minutes after intermission, racing down the right wing and centering to Southward, who chipped in the equalizer for his 12th goal of the season and a 2-2 tie. Ryan McCauley’s direct kick set up Cordes along the wing.

Wood River, its attacks helped by the wind in the second half, kept applying pressure and scored the eventual winner on a nice combination between Cordes, Southward and Graham Watanabe.

Taking a pass from Chad Cleveland, Cordes lobbed it ahead to Southward along the right wing. Southward deked a Cutthroat defender, brought the ball toward the net and passed to senior forward Watanabe, who tipped it home.

Although the wind was an unseen extra player, Wood River coach Brian Daluiso didn’t attribute the breeze to The Community School’s outstanding effort playing with the wind at its back in the first half—and going ahead 2-0.

"We got our butt kicked in the first half," said Daluiso. "They’re a good team, and they wanted it more than we did. They just beat us. It was obvious one team was trying to win the game, and one wasn’t."

Led by the attacks of senior co-captain Stephan Wasilewski and the defensive intensity of "Man of the Match" Quinn Orb, the Cutthroats put plenty of pressure on the Wolverine defense.

Senior Blake Furlow scored at 27 minutes for a 1-0 lead and sophomore Josh Stanek split a seam in the Wood River defense for a 2-0 Cutthroat lead at 36 minutes.

Cutthroat coach Richard Whitelaw said a 2-0 lead is precarious, one that can fall victim to momentum if an opponent can sneak one home. Cordes provided the spark with his header at 41 minutes and Wood River regrouped.

"Our passing was a little better in the second half," Daluiso said. "We realized The Community School was here to play soccer and we started playing our game. It was good to come back and win. All our goals were really nice."

Whitelaw said the Cutthroats, playing their third game in five days, just ran out of gas on the full-sized Hailey field.

He said, "Wood River is bigger, faster and stronger. Good teams always find a way to win and they did. I was disappointed we gave up the goals we did.

"It’s not often you get to play the defending champs twice. We’ll be looking forward to a good game against Wood River this Saturday."

Wood River (6-1-2, 3-0-1 road) will travel to Ketchum’s Atkinson Park for a rematch against The Community School (10-1-1, 5-0-1 home) on Saturday, Oct. 16 at 1 p.m.

It will be the final home appearance for Cutthroat seniors Wasilewski, Furlow, goalkeeper James Caron and Mike LaPeter.

GAME NOTES—Wood River split its goalkeeping between senior co-captain Charlie Askew (first half) and junior Robert Fundy (second half). Askew played some midfield after intermission and found numerous touches and running space.

Last year when the teams played on the same field and Wood River won 3-1, there was some controversy about a similar scenario. In that game, Askew played goal the first half and Josh Keefer handled the net in the second half. Wood River built a 2-0 halftime lead and led 3-0.

Subsequently, Whitelaw suggested that A-2 Wood River showed disrespect toward the A-3 Cutthroats by removing Askew. Daluiso made sure to contact Whitelaw before this year’s game and tell the Cutthroat coach he was going to do the same thing.

"Regardless of the score, we were going to have Robert (Fundy) play in the second half because we wanted to have everybody play," Daluiso said. "Richard knew it. It was a little different this year because we pulled our starting goalie when we were down 2-1."

Community School junior midfielder Alex McCoy played most of the game with a broken toe.

 

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