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The Message
Evansville, Indiana
November 6, 1987     The Message
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November 6, 1987
 

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12 Sports The Message -- for Catholics of Southwestern Indiana November 6, 1987 Rutter on Sports By DAVE RUTrER You could see the smile all the00 way from Indianapolis Fred Williams, the retired firefighter who helped invent girls high school soccer in Evansville, figured it was just about the happiest moment he'd ever had on the large green field. There have been other good times, to be sure. Lots of league titles, select teams competing for na- tional honors, and then there were the years his daughter was a Memorial athlete. But for emotional fervor, nothing quite mat- ches a group of kids winning the state title for their school. So when Memorial's Tigers walked off the Pan Am Field in Indianapolis last Saturday, you could see Williams" smile all the way from Marion County. "Yes, I think that was pretty much the top of the heap," says Williams who has been coaching the team ever since 1980 when the sport started in Evansville. "It was very emotional, more emo- tional than any win we've had." It was even more satisfying because of the cir- cumstances, and also because of the title victim -- Carmel. The local girls' soccer league is a spring-only event, but the state tournament is designed as the high point of a fall season. As a result, the Memorial girls' teams that have dominated local action ever since the league was founded in 1980 didn't have anywhere to go. There were select teams -- actually all-star groups under indepen- dent sponsorship -- but that's not quite the same as achieving glory while wearing your school's color. As for the Memorial teams that competed in the fall, those had the restriction of limited com- petition -- sometimes as few as s half-dozen games in preparation for the playoffs. For two years, Williams had taken Memorial's fall team to Indianapolis with that handicap and run into Carmel's Greyhounds. "We've had a very tough time beating them," he says. "We've had good teams with enough talent but they were always tough for us to play." In 1985, Carmel defeated the Lady Tigers, 3-2, in two overtimes. Last year, Carmel turned the trick 2-0 in the afternoon opener. "In both those games, we played 15retty well," he says, "and we were ahead statistically. But it seemed like any break or any bounce of the ball just didn't seem to go our way." This time the bounces went Memorial's way, but it didn't hurt to have Laura Gries delivering the best bounce of all. Her bulls-eye in the five-shot shootoff -- after regulation and overtime had failed to decide mat- ters -- finally did in the Greyhounds. The Hounds had missed one of the early shots in shootoff, and Williams sensed the fate had shifted to Memorial's side. "They shot first which is good for me -- and they missed," said Williams. "We knew after they missed, that as long as we didn't miss, they couldn't tie us." After the winning shot, there was a natural state of pandemonium. But with Miss Gries doing the honors, Williams suspected Memorial had the better of the odds. "She's our leading scorer and probably our career scoring leader with a year to go," he says. "Mentally, she's very, very tough. She was beaten and bruised from one end to other, but she's not ever coming out of the game unless she's forced to. That's the type of mental toughness you have to have, because penalty kicks are 90 percent mental." The Tigers had reached the title summit by thrashing North Central, 7-1 on Friday night with Miss Gries bagging four goals. Memorial's boys team wasn't quite as lucky with Carmel, if that is a term which aptly applies in state finals. Although the Tigers thoroughly outplayed Carmel, the 'Hounds still came away with a 1-0 victory in the title game. Memorial fans may be disappointed at the result, but Bill Vieth's team is relatively young and made giant strides during a rebuilding season. Don't bet against the Tigers next season. ******* Williams got a coaching assist at the state finals from Rob Schoenstein, former University of Evansville star and the Mater Dei boys' head coach. He was on hand on the sidelines and helped pick the five kickers for the overtime shootout. Schoenstein also helps Williams during the spring season. -k ,k ,k ,k  -k Memorial's girls soccer program will get a year's grace period during a changeover to a fall _, season. By 1988, the team will be sanctioned of- ":: ficially for fall, with the spring team probably shifted to the "select" format. Although the city schools have yet to follow, Williams says one of the benefits of a fall soccer season won't become apparent for several more years. There is a strong sentiment for a spring soft- ball season for girls. That sport could begin next spring, says Williams. City athletic directors fear that fall girls soccer would hurt volleyball and cross country teams, but there could be even more drain if spring sports .ft. have to compete with softball. "So, we were look- ing one or two years down the road and felt that fall was the best for us," Williams says. MVP's are named in K of C football league The Memorial High School Knights of Columbus Council 565 Football League concluded its 1987 season with its fourth awards dinner at Memorial cafeteria Nov. 1. Each team and each player were presented with trophies. At the dinner, Memorial Head Football Coach, Ralph Weinzapfel, spoke on the im- portance of the league to the football program at Memorial High School. The combined team of Holy Rosary/Good Shepherd/ St. John, with a record of six wins and no losses, was awarded the league's championship trophy. The champions scored 184 points. The league's most valuable player, chosen by all the league coaches, was Jim Bockting of St. Theresa/Holy Redeemer. He led his team in scoring with 79 of the team's 143 offensive points. The most valuable players for each team were Rick Reed of St. Benedict; Ryan Brownlee of Christ the King/Holy Spirit; Matt Perkins of Holy Rosary/Good Shepherd/St. John; and Jim Bockting of St. Theresa/Holy Redeemer. MVP honors Rick Reed, Jim Bociding, Ryan Brownlee and Matt Perkins. For information on vocations contact: Father David Fleck, Vocations Office, 424-5536 Ext. 111 ST. VINCENT DE PAUL CHURCH TURKEY SHOOT SUNDAY Nov. 15th HIGHLAND WOODS-- VINCENNES (ON HART STREET -- JUST BEYOND K-MART 10 : 30 A.M. TILL DARK SOUP, HAMBURGERS, SAUSAGE, SOFT DRINKS AND COFFEE AVAILABLE PLUS A COUNTRY STORE WITH ALL KINDS OF INTERESTING ITEMS. The public is cordially invited to attend.