Williamsville North will get a third crack at ECIC I rival Clarence and the Red Devils’ domination of the Section VI Class AA girls soccer playoffs. The Spartans advanced to Monday’s sectional championship game against the four-time defending champions with a 2-1 semifinal victory over Niagara Wheatfield Tuesday night at Sweet Home.
Junior Melanie Krysiak scored the winner for the Spartans with eight minutes left.
Krysiak settled a long ball to the box from a teammate and found an opening against the Falcons goalkeeper.
Sophomore Lianna Vansice gave the Spartans a 1-0 lead 15 minutes into the first half, but Niagara Wheatfield tied it before the break.
"The wind played a huge factor in the game," North coach Doug Kircher said. "Both teams played better against the wind than with the wind at their backs. Their tying goal came against the wind and so did our winning goal."
Clarence earned another trip to the sectional finals with a 3-0 victory over Orchard Park. Emma Faso scored twice and assisted on the third goal by Emily Jebens. Clarence goalkeeper Grace Fabian made seven saves in shutting out the Quakers.
Williamsville North lost twice to Clarence in regular season ECIC I play. The Red Devils won, 2-0, on Sept. 7 and 1-0 on Sept. 28. North’s other loss was to Orchard Park, 2-1.
Albion which came into the Class B-1 bracket as the No. 8 seed scored another upset, defeating Alden, 2-1, on Claire Squicciarini’s second goal of the game with seven minutes left. Squicciarini’s first goal just 15 seconds into the game gave the Purple Eagles the early lead. Alden tied it with nine minutes left in the second half.
Eighth-grader Sydney Mulka made 11 saves for coach Maggie Orbaker’s team.
Albion will face Niagara-Orleans League champion Newfane as it makes its first sectional championship game appearance in girls soccer. In fact, it’s the farthest any Albion girls soccer team has ever advanced in sectional play. Newfane, the No. 2 seed, defeated No. 6 Olean, 4-2, also at Williamsville North. The B-1 championship game will be on Saturday morning at Williamsville North.
In Class B-2, Akron pulled away with three second-half goals in a 4-0 semifinal victory over Southwestern also at Williamsville North. Kara Seguin scored a first half goal to put the Tigers in front. Jenna Robnett, Seguin and Amanda Swader added tallies in the second half. Seguin had two assists in addition to her two goals.
Akron goalkeeper Laurie Poeller stood out with 12 saves.
Coach Ed Apholz’s Tigers will face Niagara-Orleans League rival Wilson, the No. 4 seed, for the title on Saturday at Williamsville North. Wilson defeated Fredonia, 2-1.
In Class C, No. 1 seed Maple Grove remained undefeated with a 1-0 victory over Silver Creek at Dunkirk. Adri Carlson scored the winner for the Red Dragons. One website erroneously reported it as a 3-1 Silver Creek victory.
North boys in final, too
Williamsville North’s boys soccer team also will play for the sectional Class AA title. The Spartans defeated Lancaster, 2-0, in the first game of the semifinal doubleheader at Williamsville South. The defending champion Clarence boys also victimized Orchard Park, defeating the Quakers, 2-1, in the second game at South.
Ross Showalter scored early in first half and Kyle Pollard tallied in the second off a pass from Chris O’Brien for Clarence. Jimmy Doran scored for the Quakers late in the second half.
Lucian Issa and Enrique Arellano each scored for Bishop Timon-St. Jude in a 2-0 triumph over Park. Ryan Gall was in goal for the Tigers to get the shutout.
Canisius tops Eden
No. 4 ranked Canisius swept three sets from No. 2 Eden in their annual match. The Crusaders won 25-16, 25-23 and 25-19 as Troy Good had 16 kills and three blocks and Brian Herrmann had 31 assists.
"It’s always exciting for our team and our fans when we play Eden," said Canisius coach Tom Weislo. "It’s good for volleyball in our area when the good teams play each other."
Eden was coming off a stunning loss at Maryvale on Monday night that left the Raiders in a tie for the championship in ECIC III.
In girls volleyball, St. Mary’s of Lancaster, No. 1 in the WNY small schools poll but the undisputed No. 1 team overall, swept three sets from cross-town rival Lancaster, 25-12, 25-20 and 25-21. Hannah Mulhern had 18 kills for the Lancers (34-5-2) while Jillian Vitale racked up 37 assists and Summer Slade had 15 kills.
Makayla Greenfield had 24 assists and five digs for No. 1 ranked large school Williamsville East in a 25-12, 25-17, 25-14 nonleague triumph over Williamsville North.