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Nordonia soccer picking up the pace in late season

by Matt Deutsch | Correspondent Published: October 5, 2016 12:00 AM

The Nordonia High School girls soccer team has continued to play through injuries and adversity. With that perseverance, the Lady Knights have boosted their overall record above .500.

On Sept. 26, Nordonia battled Suburban League National Conference adversary Stow Munroe-Falls. The Lady Knights and the Lady Bulldogs battled to a 0-0 tie.

The match was called after the first half due to a lighting malfunction at the stadium. Senior goalkeeper Sydney Bostjancic accounted for four saves against Stow.

On Sept. 28, Nordonia traveled to conference counterpart North Royalton. The Lady Knights fell to defeat by the score of 7-2.

"North Royalton is one of the best teams we'll see this season," said Nordonia head coach Les Gicei. "We were only down 3-2 with 20 minutes left in the game, but then we just fell apart. They were definitely a high-quality opponent."

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Jenna Toth scored the first goal for Nordonia, with an assist by junior midfielder Carmen Licht. Junior forward Shannon Spencer accounted for the Lady Knights' second goal, a header, with an assist by sophomore midfielder Sophie Lim. Spencer's goal made the score 3-2. Bostjancic registered a total of nine saves in goal.

On Oct. 1, Nordonia hit the road again, this time visiting non-conference opponent Massillon Perry. The Lady Knights trailed 2-0 at intermission before scoring four unanswered goals in the second half to post a 4-2 victory.

Spencer scored two of Nordonia's goals, while Licht and Lauren Pugh each tallied one goal. Bostjancic notched five saves in goal.

"It was a really nice comeback win for us," said Gicei. "The girls played well."

As a result of that stretch of matches, Nordonia now owns an overall record of 6-5-2. The Lady Knights are also 1-2-1 within the National Conference.

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"We're still battling some injuries, but we're kind of plugging players in at different positions," said Gicei. "We're getting a lot of contributions from a lot of different people. We're putting forth a great team effort and gelling together."

The Nordonia boys soccer team also played three matches last week.

In the first contest, the Knights fell to Suburban League National Conference foe North Royalton by the score of 3-0.

The Knights tied non-conference opponent Warren Harding on the road by the score of 1-1, with sophomore midfielder Mark Kaczmarek contributing their lone goal. Nordonia also blanked another non-conference foe, Bedford, by an 8-0 margin at home.

Carlton Spitz turned a hat trick against Bedford, leading the Knights with three goals. Senior forward/midfielder Mike Whelpley added a pair of goal, while senior midfielder Trey Crockett, senior forward Pat Schlund, and sophomore defender Shawn Uguccini contributed one goal apiece.

The Knights now own an overall record of 5-7-1, as well as a ledger of 1-4 within the conference.

"This week, we only play Twinsburg at home on Wednesday," said Nordonia head coach Jason Stepp. "It should be a grudge match like last year, when we fell 1-0 at their place. We can only hope to have the same kind of game, where both teams just play there heart out from whistle to whistle."

Email: mleonard@recordpub.com

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