CELINA — The St. Marys girls soccer team emerged from a tie with rival Celina in mid-September feeling like they'd let one slip away.
St. Marys gets another crack at the Bulldogs — this time with a district title game berth on the line.
The Roughriders (12-1-4) will play Celina (12-1-3) on Wednesday at 7 p.m. in a district semi-final match at Celina.
The teams are equals in almost every way statistically possible. Both squads finished the season tied for second in the WBL with 5-1-3 league marks. The teams carry almost identical records into the district tournament, as well. Both teams score four goals per game and have both given up nine goals this season.
St. Marys' Ashleigh Falk's two goals on Saturday give her a team-high 19 for the season. Kelly Heitkamp leads the Roughriders with 12 assists this fall.
St. Marys is making its sixth consecutive district appearance.
St. Marys captured a Division II sectional title at Celina with a workmanlike 5-0 win over Van Wert to set up a rematch with rival Bulldogs. Celina defeated Wapakoneta 3-0 on Saturday in the first sectional title game.
“We got to watch the Celina match and they kind of won the same way we did with a 3-0 win, so I guess we’ll get some things done this week and see Celina again,” St. Marys head coach Paul Dingledine said. “We’ll see what happens.”
Celina is 7-1 on its home pitch.
The teams played to a 1-1 tie back on Sept. 15 at St. Marys.
Celina's Alex Parker fired a shot as the Bulldogs were in desperation mode with fewer than two minutes left in the match and down 1-0. Parker's deep shot found the back of the net and the rivals left West Field knotted up at 1-1.
St. Marys' Sara Lininger's diversion into the net early in the second half was St. Marys' lone score in that match.
The Riders and Bulldogs have played to a tie the last two times they've faced off. Now a draw won’t be an option in a match-up of two of the Western Buckeye League’s best teams and fiercest rivals.
St. Marys advanced with an easy 5-0 win over Van Wert last Saturday.
Ashleigh Falk scored the first goal of the match at the 31:40 mark in the first half with an assist from Kayla Boysell.
St. Marys went up 2-0 on Courtney Christman’s rebound goal with 27:09 left in the first half.
Falk added her second goal of the match at the 16:20 mark to put the Riders up 3-0. Falk now leads the Roughriders with 19 goals on the season.
St. Marys’ Jamie James booted in St. Marys’ fourth goal at the 16:13 mark of the second half.
Sara Lininger finished off the scoring for St. Marys with a goal with 7:52 left.