ONEONTA — Wyatt Crowley finally found a place to put a soccer ball where Edmeston goalie Logan Vibbard couldn’t get to it. Then, for good measure, Crowley found another one.
Crowley tied the Tri-Valley League boys soccer championship game midway through the second half, then won it on a golden goal late in the second overtime to give Cherry Valley-Springfield a 3-2 win Saturday at the Wright National Soccer Campus.
“He’s a great athlete,” Crowley said of Vibbard, a senior who moved from center midfield to goalie earlier this season. “He’s the smartest keeper in the league. You can write that down, because he deserves the credit.”
Vibbard, who took over in goal for T-V West Division winner Edmeston after three early-season losses, made 14 saves. He jumped for them, he swatted them down with his fists, he knocked them away with his cleats and he even laid out to rein them in.
Vibbard was the main reason the Panthers, who were outshot, 17-3, led for nearly 30 minutes. And after his performance, it didn’t sound right to say he gave up the winning goal.
“That’s exactly what I said to him,” Edmeston coach Ken Plows said. “He just has to keep his head up. He kept us in the game with the saves he did make.
“I switched him into goal after our third loss, and that’s when we made our run,” Plows continued. “It could have backfired because he was a great center midfielder, too. He’s just a good athlete.”
Crowley’s winner came from the left side, off a pass from Ben Drugatz.
“Ben was carrying the ball down and he beat a few guys,” Crowley said. “I was calling for it and calling for it. He tried to get it to me, but they blocked it the first time. But he stayed with it and was able to poke it through to me. I was looking to get it to the corner and I was able to put it in.”
Crowley tied the score with 20:50 left in the second half, when his long shot went in over Vibbard.
“He caught him off the line and got it over the top,” CV-S coach Terri Adams said.
Added Crowley: “I saw their goalie was up a bit, so I was trying to either get it to the back of the net or looking for a cross. I was hoping one or the other would get it done.”
The Panthers took a 2-1 lead late in the first half after a goal and an assist by Linton Wainright.
With 17:30 left in the half, Wainright played a long cross from the right corner that Dylan Rollins headed into the left side netting.
About 11 minutes later, Wainright scored on a throughball from Clayton Lyon.
“Linton’s been our main scorer all year,” Plows said. “He plays front center and that’s who you want to be your leading scorer. I’m pretty sure he is not just our leading scorer, but he is leading the league, too. He’s definitely got good speed. I thought that’s what we needed in this game — a lot of speed.”
The Patriots had taken a 1-0 lead with 26 minutes left in the first half. Drugatz got the assist on that one, too, as he sent a sharp ball across the box that Dan Bosma redirected into the left corner.
The goal came shortly after a lengthy delay as CV-S junior midfielder Jake Spencer needed an ambulance to leave the field. Spencer appeared to break his left ankle after jumping to make a play and landing awkwardly.
“I give Coach Adams all the credit for keeping us in the game,” Crowley said. “She talked to us after Jake got hurt and told us that we needed to stick together and we needed to keep our heads in the game. She really did a great job.”
The game had been back-and-forth up to that point, and Plows said he felt his team had come out strong.
“In a weird way, I think that’s where them winning in the regular season helped us,” he said. “We came out with a lot of energy.”
Adams said she thought her team lost focus for a while.
“We stopped playing our short game and started playing a 50-50 game,” she said. “But I think that we were able to get it back. We stuck together and saw it to the end.”
CV-S (15-1), which has won the T-V East Division for eight straight years and is 4-2-2 in crossovers during that time, enters the Section Four Class D Tournament as the No. 2 seed. After a bye, the Patriots will host a sectional quarterfinal Oct. 26 against No. 10 Stamford (8-5-1) or No. 7 South Kortright (9-4-2).
Fourth-seeded Edmeston (12-4) hosts No. 12 Schenevus (7-6-2) in a sectional opener Wednesday.
CV-S 3, Edmeston 2
at Wright National Soccer Campus
CV-S 1 1 0 1 - 3
Edmeston 2 0 0 0 - 2
Cherry Valley-Springfield (15-1): Wyatt Crowley 2-0, Dan Bosma 1-0, Ben Drugatz 0-2.
Edmeston (12-4): Linton Wainright 1-1, Dylan Rollins 1-0, Clayton Lyon 0-1.
Shots-corner kicks: C 17-11; E 3-5.
Goalies: Jeremy Pickett (C) 1; Logan Vibbard (E) 14.