The battle between West and East superiority will come down to Wednesday night’s football game after the former swept the latter in the N.C. Coaches Association boys’ and girls’ soccer all-star games Tuesday night.
Led by Durham School of the Arts coach Amy Green, the East girls lost 2-1. Swansboro’s Kimberly Moore’s wonder strike in the 57th was answered quickly by the West with goals in the 61st and 65th minute.
The West’s boys routed the East 4-1 with three second-half goals. East Carteret's Alex DeOliveira had an assist to Richlands’ Anthony Howard in the final minute for the East.
The games were played at Macpherson Stadium at the Bryan Park Soccer Complex outside of Greensboro. UNC Greensboro is the normal host of the NCCA All-Star Game, but it is having work done on its field this summer.
The East won both NCCA basketball all-star games on Monday night.
Crutchfield ends year with high note: Northern Durham coach Michael Tetreault called his Tar Heel recruit’s senior year “the most injuries in as many different places without having a skiing accident.”
Nicole Crutchfield had 40 goals as a junior but only played in a few games because of injuries. On Tuesday, Crutchfield ended her year with two shots on goal.
“This was actually my first game back being healthy, so it was awesome to put it all out here and play,” Crutchfield said. “I definitely think we controlled the game, had more possession, we just got caught on the counterattack.”
McDonald shines: Wakefield’s Kat McDonald was the N.C. Coaches Association’s girls’ soccer player of the year and she looked the part on Tuesday. The Duke recruit was flying around the pitch, threading several tight passes to teammates.
McDonald, just 5 feet, 3 inches, won a header off a corner kick, but it went just over the net.
“I just tried to control the middle, get the ball when I could, pass it to people who could also do really good things,” McDonald said.
Triangle holds defense together: Millbrook’s Alexa Asher, Panther Creek’s Rachael Everhart and Durham School of the Arts’ Kendall Conder played strong defense in front of Broughton’s Allie Cutler for the first 60 minutes.
In the second half, a breakaway by Megan McCallister, of Asheville’s A.C. Reynolds, slipped by Cutler and was rolling to the line when Everhart cleared it away at the last second.
“Whenever Allie comes out, my job as a defender is to have her back, get on the line and get it out at all costs,” Everhart said. “So as soon as she came out, I started booking it toward the line.”
Later in the half, McCallister, who was named MVP, got free on a similar play and slotted it into the empty net to tie the game. Hough’s Emmily Cowie scored on an assist from Sarah Murphy four minutes later.
Pirate proud: Corinth Holders coach Brent Walston was beaming after watching three of his school’s players.
“It’s great,” said Walston, who is the Pirates’ athletic director and boys’ soccer coach, “for us to maybe start being known as a soccer school. We’ve got a good athletic program. The kids (played) well tonight and are holding their own.”
Bella Iorio took some corners in the girls’ game while Aaron Lopez and Chason Karst started in the boys’ game.
Triangle boys get the starting nod: Karst, Lopez, Cardinal Gibbons’ Cooper Duplantis, Broughton’s Matt Brickhouse and Jack Krueger, Carrboro’s Richard Cato and Heritage’s Hunter Weiland all started for the East.
“It was a great honor playing with some friends who I’ve played with all my life,” Duplantis said. “The result may have not gone our way, but we enjoyed every moment of it.”
Weiland took an early crack at the goal, but his bending volley from 30 yards away was tipped away by the goalie.
Brickhouse’s chip from 25 feet away with the outside part of his foot nearly crossed the line, but it was kicked away by a defender at the last moment.
“The keep came out really quick, and he was pretty close to me and I had to lob it up really high,” Brickhouse said.
Cato allowed just one goal in his one half of play, and it came on a penalty in the 17th minute.
“That was frustrating, I read it wrong. It’s always a shame when you go the wrong way on those,” Cato said. “Coming out here with the guys was a great experience because finding players of this quality is something that I’ve had trouble with at home. Playing with all-stars is a great experience.”