“We have several girls who take those kicks, but Mar has a little more bend to her ball,” Mackey said. “She has a little bit more of a bending chip, so I thought that was our best option.”
That’s exactly the ball Ruff played to the far post.
“I tried to just use it as a cross,” said Ruff, who assisted both of Oneonta’s goals in a 2-0 victory over Seton Catholic Central in the Section Four final Friday. Ruff also had the assist on the Taryn More’s goal against Bronxville last season.
Here’s how Hitchcock described the rest.
“The goalie (Charley Warble) went to play the ball and missed it. Thankfully, I was right there and just ran through the ball like Mr. Mackey tells us and it went in. It was awesome.”
Each side had one solid chance during the remainder of the half. With 16:10 left in the half, Picinich received a pass from Brieanna Baker at the top of the box, turned and sent a high shot, but Warble made a leaping save with two hands.
About two minutes later, Bronxville’s Caroline Cory received a crossing pass in the box, but her shot went wide of the right post.
The scariest minutes for OHS came at the outset of the second half. The Broncos (15-4-1) pressured repeatedly and the ball rarely left the Yellowjackets’ side of the field. For about 10 minutes, it looked like a replay of last season’s state title game, a 3-1 overtime loss to Greece Odyssey in which OHS was thoroughly outplayed after halftime.
“I think the first few minutes (of the second half), we played terribly and I told the girls that on the field,” Ruff said. “I said we’re playing terrible and we need to push up or they’re going to score.”