LOGAN – With ingredients such as ball control, efficiency and stout defensive play, Fairfield Union cooked up a winning formula Thursday night.
The No. 1 seeded Falcons ended Unioto’s season with a 3-1 win in a Division II district semifinal at Logan High School.
“We did a great job of pressuring the ball and that’s one of the things we wanted to do,” Fairfield Union coach Casey Bischof said. “Unioto’s got some fantastic offensive options. We wanted to shut them down defensively and when we had chances, just attack.”
Attacking, efficiently, is what they did best.
Fairfield Union (15-1-1) took just seven shots on goal throughout the entire match. But they connected with the back of the net on three of those attempts.
“Fairfield Union is a great team,” Unioto coach Cara Rathkamp said. “They do a great job keeping possession of the ball and they have a lot of threats on their team. They did a nice job tonight of working through our gaps and attacking.”
One of those threats, sophomore Theron Ruff, gave her Falcons a 1-0 edge off a corner kick with 16:17 left in the first half — one of five corner kicks awarded to the Falcons during the first 40 minutes.
On the opposite side, Unioto (13-5-1) managed just three shots on goal during that time as prolific scorers Jayla Campbell and Lexi Maughmer were held under wraps. Campbell’s only attempt in the first half came off a penalty kick.
“Maughmer is fantastic and we knew (Unioto) would try to rally around her to win it,” Bischof said. “And we wanted to put pressure on Campbell. We know she’s a great scorer. We didn’t want to let her shoot and I think we still gave her too many shots. She’s fantastic and she’s only going to get better.”
The Falcons struck quickly in the second half as Taylor Davis scored on a breakaway attempt with 37:53 left. It wasn’t until the 10:59 mark where Brianna Boyle made it 3-0 in the Falcons’ favor off an assist from Davis, virtually putting the game out of reach.
Maughmer connected on a header off an assist from Acacia Kauffman with just 2:20 left, rounding out the 3-1 final.
The Shermans end the season after winning their first sectional title since 2011.
“We’ve had a great season and have a lot to look forward to,” Unioto coach Kendra Dalton said. “We’re proud of the girls. They’ve all improved as individuals. They’re a young team and we’ll be looking to get back here next season.”
Fairfield Union now advances to play Chillicothe in a Division II district final at noon Saturday at Logan High School.
“We only get one day of practice before (Saturday),” Bischof said. “We’ll work on some things but we’re not looking to change much. If we play hard and aggressive, we’ll have a chance at a win.”