Forest stifles Rams
Published: Saturday, January 21, 2006 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Saturday, January 21, 2006 at 12:00 a.m.
OCALA - The last five minutes were the toughest on Forest head coach Dave Gregory.
He had seen postseason leads evaporate before. Last year's district final loss to Gainesville in particular was still too fresh to forget.
In the end, Gregory's worries were unwarranted as his defense was up to the task, shutting out Gainesville Eastside 1-0 behind forward Kristin Burton's 140th career goal Friday night at Forest Stadium.
The shutout was the 16th of the season for the Wildcats and their third win over No. 3 seed Eastside this season.
"We felt comfortable we could hold 'em," Gregory said. "That one girl, Liz Theurer, is a good player, but we felt our speed in the back was as good as theirs. We didn't think they'd score."
Eastside's Theurer, who entered as Alachua County's all-time leading scorer with 153 career goals, found herself surrounded by 'Cats each time she corralled the ball. Theurer did manage to get a good look with 3:32 remaining in the game, but Forest keeper Rachel Canganelli recorded her 10th save of the night to thwart the last real threat from the Rams.
Eastside (16-10-1) never went away, matching Forest's hustle to the final whistle. Not until a Lincoln header sent the ball back into Eastside territory in the final minute did the host 'Cats begin to celebrate their school record 25th win.
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