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November 19, 2012

Jackets lose turf war

Season ends with 3-1 overtime loss in state final


Oneonta (18-3-1) had the better of play in the first half. The Yellowjackets opened the scoring with 10:53 left in the first half.

It started on a free kick after Greece Odyssey’s Katie Wilbur fouled More in the left corner. Nicosia took the kick and sent a low bouncer toward the near post. Nicole Harmer got a foot on the ball in traffic and sent it toward the goal.

Here’s how More described the rest: “Oh, my gosh. The goalie (Vanessa Dornelius) was on the ground, Madison Miller rebounded it off who knows? — a defender? the goalie? — then I was able to score on it.”

Dornelius nearly secured the rebound, but it squirted to her left and an unmarked More tapped it into an open net for her 18th goal of the season. Miller and Harmer were credited with assists on the play.

By half’s end, OHS held a 6-4 advantage in shots, a 2-1 edge in corner kicks and both goalies made three saves. Neither side gave any indication it was about to dominate the second half.

But Greece Odyssey established early in the second half it was not happy with its one-goal deficit. Marlowe, named the Leopards’ outstanding player of the final, led the surge. She combined speed with foot skills and a powerful right leg. Before the second half was 5 1/2 minutes old, Marlowe had a header go wide, a hard shot from 18 yards that Sloman saved and a free kick from 35 yards go wide.

Two other wicked shot attempts never made it to the goal because Cleaveland deflected them.

“They kept pressuring, they kept attacking and they kept taking shots,” Cleaveland said. “I wore a few and we deflected a lot. They had a lot of chances, but we kept them out as best we could.”

Amid the Leopards’ domination, OHS had one excellent chance to extend its lead. An unmarked More had possession around the top of the 18-yard box on the right side but shot wide to the far post with 28:15 left.

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