BROADVIEW HTS. — Brecksville-Broadview Heights Stadium has become a house of horrors for the Medina girls soccer team.
It was again Tuesday, when the Bees were knocked out with a 2-0 loss to Twinsburg in a Division I, Region 1 semifinal.
Playing on the same field that pushed Medina out of the 2015 state semifinals against eventual champion Walsh Jesuit, things didn’t change much as the Tigers (20-0) continued their incredible season by beating the Bees in almost every facet.
Twinsburg moved on to play Massillon Jackson (12-3-5) on Saturday. Medina (17-1-2) will likely sit back and wonder what if.
“Bad memories of the final four a few years back, but credit to Twinsburg,” Bees coach Doug Coreno said. “Those kids came out and they played hard. They were organized. Alli King is very, very difficult to deal with as a forward.
“We played hard, too. It just wasn’t meant to be tonight. We found the post what, three times? We had a number of corner kick opportunities. We had our chances. We didn’t lose tonight for lack of hustle or lack of heart from my girls. While the result, hurts. I’m very proud of these kids. They played their hearts out.”
The difference was King, who gave the Bees fits.
The junior scored her 24th goal of the season 11:09 in off a pass from McKenna Donahue, while goal No. 25 came on a pass from Hanna Pickens with 31:02 remaining and put Twinsburg on another level.
“We had a hard time dealing with Alli King,” Coreno said. “She got both goals. She slipped in behind our back line from the left flank twice tonight and made us pay both times. She has so much pace and is a great finisher.”
While the Bees outshot Twinsburg 8-7 and had an 8-3 edge on corner kicks, King’s crowning achievement was the shot that eliminated the No. 1 team in the state coaches poll.
“I really thought we could get one,” Medina midfielder Maria Nelson said. “In the end, we couldn’t come up with one. They’re a great team. We’re a great team and that was a great game.”
Having Grace Deville, Amy Hawersaat, Caila Robinson and Tara Gairing on defense proved to have gigantic dividends for the Tigers, who were the only team to shut out Medina this season.
The quartet knew Greater Cleveland Conference Player of the Year Nelson and Haley Anspach were going to get chances. They just made sure when Nelson and Anspach put a shot on Hannah Zochowski it didn’t have much mustard behind it.
The shutout was the 13th of the season for the Tigers, who are unscored upon in four postseason games.
“They are composed,” Coreno said. “They are athletic. They’re dangerous up top. They’re 20-0 for a reason.”
While Nelson joins Katie Neate, Maddie Stafford, Payton Beech and Tori DeLappi as starters lost to graduation, Medina is looking forward to the future.
“They definitely can learn from this,” Nelson said. “We have a lot of upcoming players. I love this team. They’re a great team, and I know they have big things coming.”
Those things begin today, when Anspach already has plans for what will be her senior season in 2019.
While losing key players is difficult, the forward sat on the bench afterward and looked to August.
“This year, we thought we had it all, but it doesn’t happen for everyone,” she said. “Next year, I think it will push us to become better and better.
“The preseason starts now. Tonight, will push a lot in the upcoming season. We’ll miss every senior a lot next year, so there will be big shoes to fill.”
Twinsburg 2, Medina 0
Division I, Region 1 Semifinal
MEDINA 0 0 — 0
TWINSBURG 1 1 — 2
M — Alli King (McKenna Donahue) 29:51.
M — King (Hannah Pickens), 31:02.
Shots on goal — Medina 8, Twinsburg 7. Corner kicks — Medina 8, Twinsburg 3. Saves — Tori DeLappi (M) 5, Hannah Zochowski (T) 8. Records — Twinsburg (20-0), Medina (17-1-2).