By Chris Zadorozny
In what was a cold, brisk and windy Wednesday afternoon at Farmington Hills High School, the Grosse Ile Red Devils and Macomb Lutheran North Mustangs squared off in the Division 3, Region 10 semifinal.
For 80 minutes, the teams went back and forth, but ultimately the Red Devils were defeated 1-0.
Although it was clear the Mustangs controlled much of the game, Grosse Ile stayed with the powerful Mustangs. Unfortunately, one team was going to win, and one was going to lose.
It took just one goal to win this game, and the Mustangs capitalized on one of their many chances. All they needed was one, despite the fantastic play from both teams.
“They were a good team, they’re really solid,” said Red Devils Coach Mike DeSana. “I give them a lot of credit; I wish them all the luck.”
Chance after chance occurred for both squads during the contest.
Macomb Lutheran had many of the early chances, but the Red Devils countered with some great chances of their own. The Mustangs hit the post, while the Mustangs’ keeper caught a close header by the Red Devils.
In the 36th minute, the Mustangs finally capitalized on one of their many chances. A rush by the Mustangs put the ball in the Red Devils’ zone. Junior keeper Wyatt Garner was playing strong, and his defense stronger, but this one would get past him.
The rush by the Mustangs created an odd-man rush, as Grosse Ile senior Lorenzo Galati found junior forward Brett Gardner on a pass and kicked it right over Garner’s right shoulder.
The Red Devils finished the first half strong, having the two final scoring chances. Grosse Ile calmed down during intermission and then switched to a 3-4-3 setup for the second half, which managed to give the team more momentum in the final 40 minutes.
But, that didn’t matter, as Grosse Ile couldn’t find the back of the net at all during the second half.
It came down to the wire in the last minute, but the Mustangs cleared their defensive area every time the Red Devils rushed.
It was a disappointing end to an otherwise successful season for the Red Devils.
“It’s really hard on the seniors; it’s a really hard loss. We put our whole emphasis on the tournament,” said DeSana. “We enjoy the league, don’t get me wrong, but this is what we play for.”
The Red Devils will be losing five seniors next year, but DeSana is positive about next year, as they’ll be returning numerous juniors and sophomores.
To read the original post that appeared in The News-Herald on October 23, 2013, go to www.miprepzone.com/thenewsherald