Brentwood soccer charges into semifinals

Thursday, May 22, 2008 at 12:46am
The Brentwood soccer team celebrates after a goal in a 2-0 win over Cleveland. Mike Strasinger for The City Paper

MURFREESBORO — Brentwood came into the Class AAA state soccer tournament as the favorite.

Wednesday night in the quarterfinals against Cleveland, the Bruins played like it as they advanced to the semifinals with a dominant 2-0 win.

The Bruins (22-0), ranked No. 2 nationally by StudentsSports.com, wasted no time getting on the board as sophomore striker Nick DeSalvatore scored two minutes into the match to give Brentwood a 1-0 lead.

Senior Bradley Jacobs had the initial shot on goal and the ball bounced in front of the net where DeSalvatore scored on a header.

“It was a weird play,” DeSalvatore said. “Brad had a good shot then it hit off a couple of players and I was able to get something on it.”

The Bruins then got another goal at the 29th minute as senior midfielder Tomi Homonnay took a cross pass and broke into the open field where he beat Cleveland goalkeeper Adam Gonzalez, giving the Bruins their a 2-0 win.

“Getting the first goal is always big,” Brentwood coach Mike Purcell said. “You can get a team back on their heels with that first one, but the second one was a dagger.”

The Bruins will now face Knoxville West (17-4) Thursday night at 7 p.m. West defeated Collierville 2-0.

In what has become a familiar sight for the Bruins, senior goalkeeper Jordan Leedle was solid, making 10 saves. Bruins posted their ninth straight shutout that goes back to a 2-1 win against Hendersonville on April 24.

During the nine-game shootout streak the Bruins have outscored their opponents 23-0.

“Our guys in the back have a high soccer IQ and having guys like Danny (Rayburn) and Jordan (Leedle) helps a lot and we also have two guys on the outside that challenge you,” Purcell said.

The game was chippy throughout as both teams combined for 41 fouls.

Knoxville Catholic 2, Goodpasture 0: While Brentwood was dominating its match against Cleveland, the same couldn’t be said for the Cougars.

Goodpasture (12-6) playing in the school’s first state tournament game, appeared nervous against the machine known as Knoxville Catholic.

The Fighting Irish (24-2) put a ton of pressure on Cougar senior goalkeeper Luke Hartman and finally broke through as freshman midfielder Michael Bonfini found a ball in front of the net and beat Hartman with a shot to the right back corner of the net.

Catholic continued to stay on Goodpasture’s end, and Catholic got their final goal at the 49th minute as Brian Beckham took a cross pass from Hank Hollerman for the final score.

The Cougar offense was anemic as it only had one shot for the match as Catholic controlled play throughout.

“They are one of the best teams I have ever seen, Goodpasture coach Bryan Ayer said. “They are very skilled every where and it was tough for us to defend, because they make it very hard on you on both offense and defense.”

Other results

Baseball: Defending state champ Goodpasture (36-4) trounced University School of Jackson 8-1 and advanced into the winners bracket finals of the Class AA baseball tournament at Smyrna High.

Turner Cripps fired a six-hitter and struck out 12 for the Cougars, who will meet Marion County today at 4 p.m. for a trip to the finals. Adam Adkins fired a two-hit shutout and Bennett Smith hammered a three-run homer as Goodpasture blanked Marion County 10-0 in the Cougars’ tourney opener Tuesday.

At Blackman High, Lipscomb (31-8) stayed alive in AA with a 10-4 win over Ripley. The Mustangs lost to Bolivar 4-2 earlier in the day and will meet Bolivar at 4 p.m. today to try to stay alive.

Nationally ranked Farragut crushed Ravenwood 13-0, but the Raptors bounced back to edge Lincoln County 12-11 to stay alive in AAA. Ravenwood must beat Farragut today at 4 p.m. to keep its hopes afloat.

Brentwood Academy (24-16) eliminated BGA with a 6-5 win in DII-AA at Lipscomb, as Will Blalock (7-0) pitched a seven-hitter and Mark Jacobs rapped out two hits. Navery Moore homered for DII Region champ BGA, which ended 26-13.

Harding Academy edged Davidson Academy 2-1 despite a strong pitching performance by Ryan Goad, who fired a four-hitter and struck out 11 for the Bears. Davidson tries to stay alive in an elimination game today at 10 a.m.

Softball: Devon Schmidt was almost perfect in a 3-0 win over Unicoi County in Class AA at Starplex. Schmidt fired a no-hitter, retiring 21 of the 22 batters she faced, with the only runner getting on by an error. Jessica Williamson had two hits for Goodpasture, which reached today’s winners bracket finals.

Brentwood bounced back from a 6-1 loss to Beech with an 8-0 shutout of Bolton to stay alive in AAA. Jennifer Maher fired a one-hitter striking out eight for the Bruins, who play at 12:15 p.m. today in the losers bracket finals.

Ainsley McCullough fired a three-hit shutout and struck out seven as Davidson Academy blanked FACS 5-0 in the DII-A tourney. The Bears meet SBEC in the winners bracket finals today at 10 a.m.

Tennis: University School of Nashville won its first state tennis championship as the Tigers beat Davidson Academy 4-2 in an all-Nashville final in the DII-A boys tournament at MTSU. Sreyas Reddy and Alex Metzman clinched the match with an 8-0 win at No. 1 doubles. The Tigers led 3-2 after singles on wins by Reddy, Metzman and Scott Fishel.

The USN girls lost to St. Andrews-Sewanee 4-1 in the DII-A final, with Caroline Awh collecting the Tigers lone win with a three-set victory at No. 4 singles.

— Harold Huggins contributed to this report

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