ONEONTA – Two schools 20 miles apart, Cherry Valley-Springfield and Milford, will play round three in girls soccer on Saturday as both teams won their Section Four Class D semifinals on Tuesday at the Wright National Soccer Campus.
The teams are filled with girls who are friends with their rivals – often they play together on travel teams – but they frequently mention each other as "the biggest rival." Now the rivalry has gotten bigger as one team will be crowned the section champion and move on to the state tournament.
“They’re just a really good team,” Milford's Emilie Mertz said of the Patriots. “We both want the same thing, and we are both going to have to go out there and work for it.”
The section final will be on Saturday at the Wright National Soccer Campus. The game time is still to be determined.
Milford 2, Morris 1
By now, everyone in Section Four Class D girls soccer knows that Mertz is back.
Mertz, Milford’s junior forward who missed all of the 2012 season with a torn ACL, proved that she is at full strength two minutes into the second half.
She beat two Morris defenders inside the penalty box and scored on a shot to the left post that turned out to be the winner in the Wildcats’ 2-1 win over the Mustangs.
“I got the ball from Addy (Lawson) and basically it was a 50-50 chance,” said Mertz, whose goal gave Milford a 2-0 lead. “I got possession and I just took my chance with it.”
Added Milford coach Chris Saggese, “(Mertz) has been building confidence every game since she has been back and she has been getting better every game.”
Milford took a 1-0 lead 12 minutes into the first half. Fiona Brennan played a throughball to Lawson on the left side of the box. Lawson’s shot hit the right post and bounced in.