Orion-Sherrard Soccer Falls in Regional

Kayci Woodley
Ali Seys, far right, leads a contingent of Orion-Sherrard Chargers in pursuit of the ball during the regional semifinal game with Alleman on Monday, May 18, in Geneseo.

For an Orion-Sherrard varsity girls’ soccer team to go into a regional game against Alleman and expect to come out with a win is a victory in itself.

For the program to compete with a Western Big 6 school the way the 2009 O-S Chargers did on Monday, May 18, in the first round of Class 2A regional semifinal shows the improvements head coach Rick Cline has made.

“I think every one of them gave everything they had,” Cline said. “We got 80 minutes of intense ball in both directions.”

Orion-Sherrard fell to the Pioneers 2-1 in the Geneseo regional, and had a number of opportunities to overcome Alleman. The O-S Chargers kept the Pioneers on their toes in the entire game and never let up. Orion-Sherrard left the field after an all-out effort the entire game.

At the 15-minute mark the Pioneers’ Lynn DeVriese put the ball in the bottom left corner of the goal after a breakaway for the first score of the night. Ten minutes later, DeVriese laid off a drop pass to teammate Carrie Hoepfner for a second Alleman goal to give the Pioneers’ a deadly 2-0 lead.

Cline always says a 2-0 lead is the most dangerous score in soccer, both for the winning team and the losing team. The team with two goals often develops an attitude and starts to look past the game, losing focus, while the team behind can get down and give up on the game. Orion-Sherrard did not give up for a second.

“They weren’t that much of a better team than us,” Cline said. “They took advantage of a couple of mistakes we made and good teams do that, they don’t let you make mistakes.”

In the 34th minute, Orion-Sherrard came within one after a goal from sophomore Katherine Hellberg off of senior Kourtni Barnes’ corner kick.

At halftime, Alleman led 2-1 with five shots on goal to Orion-Sherrard’s four. Orion-Sherrard finished the game with more shots than the Big 6 rival, 22 to the Pioneers’ 16.

The O-S Chargers held the Pioneers scoreless in the second half but weren’t able to put another ball in the back of the net offensively. Orion-Sherrard had countless chances to score in the last two minutes of the game but couldn’t finish any of them.

“I think we had some opportunities there that were close but no cigar and that’s kind of our game at times,” Cline said. “But I certainly feel like we were a good team that unfortunately was able to convert on all our chances.”

The 2009 Orion-Sherrard team finished with a record of 12-5-2, tying the mark made in 2007 for most wins in a season, and setting a new program record for lowest number of losses in a season. The O-S Chargers lost just five games, by a total of five goals. The squad scored in every one of its losses and never allowed more than two goals scored by an opponent.

“We leave the field with heads held high,” Cline said. “I’m proud of what they’ve accomplished if you look back several years we’ve come a long way in a relatively short period of time.”