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Soaked, but Satisfied: Windsor Edges Black River in Double OT

  • Windsor boys soccer Head Coach Steve Mulloy watches his team play Black River at Windsor on Tuesday, Sept. 25, 2018. Windsor defeated Black river, 3-2, in double overtime. (Valley News - August Frank) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com.

  • Windsor's Hunter Grela celebrates his game-winning goal in double overtime against Black River at Windsor High School on Tuesday, Sept. 25, 2018. Windsor defeated Black river 3-2. (Valley News - August Frank) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com.

  • Black River's Jack Boyle stops the ball in place with his body in Black River's game against Windsor on Tuesday, Sept. 25, 2018. Windsor defeated Black river, 3-2, in double overtime. (Valley News - August Frank) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com.



Valley News Correspondent
Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Windsor — After nearly 97 minutes of soggy soccer, Windsor’s Hunter Grela, moving into the attacking zone without the ball, took a through pass from Colby Darrell and found only Black River goalkeeper Jonathan Peters in his way.

Grela made one move to lure down Peters on the slick surface, waltzed in and scored, giving the Yellowjackets a 3-2 boys soccer overtime win over the Presidents on Tuesday at MacLeay-Royce Field.

While Grela — a senior, who figured in all Windsor’s scoring — made the move to get by the Presidents’ keeper, it would not have happened if Darrell had not made the near-perfect pass that sliced through two defenders.

“He put it right on my foot, and I gave it one touch and everything opened up,” said Grela, who also had a second goal and an assist on the day.

“That was a great ball,” Windsor coach Steve Mulloy said of the feed.

A rainy day didn’t keep Windsor from hitting its home turf. Windsor assistant athletic director Andy Tufts said all day that it was going to be a go at game time.

“The field hasn’t been played on much, and the ground in front of the goals has not been chewed up,” he said. “Besides, it won’t bother the kids.”

The Jacks agreed.

“I love it,” Windsor keeper Eli Milligan said before the game.

Both teams have been struggling this year. Windsor improved to 2-6-0, while Black River dropped to 1-4-0. Its only win came against Windsor earlier this year (2-0).

Windsor trailed in regulation, 2-1, until the Jacks tied the with 8:39 to go. Grela delivered a throw-in that was booted home by senior Jacob Harriman.

Windsor escaped some serious attempts by the Presidents in the first 10 minutes of overtime. Jack Boyle and Colby Clouart each had chances from in close and misfired.

The Jacks seemed to get a second wind in the second 10-minute OT session. A few minutes prior to the game-winner, the Yellowjackets had a corner, and Mulloy moved everybody, including goalkeeper Milligan, inside the Black River penalty area, but the ploy failed and the Windsor netminder had to scurry back.

When the game started, play on the field looked worse than the weather for Windsor. The visitors scored 34 seconds into the contest on a Travis Blake goal off the opening kickoff.

The score stayed that way until the 24-minute mark, when Grela tied the game on a move to Peters’ right after taking a pass from Jacob Harriman.

The two sides combined on nothing but near-misses after that, until Clouart put Black River into the lead with less than eight minutes to go in the first half.

Before Windsor’s season began, Mulloy talked about making the regular season as a stepping stone into the playoffs.

“We just want to keep getting better in September and get ready for October,” the first-year coach said. “I think we’re doing that. Everybody makes the playoffs. ”

Black River won the statistical battle, outshooting the Jacks, 14-10, and earning an 8-3 edge in corners.

Both teams played with short benches, Black River arriving with 14 players and Windsor having just “12 healthy bodies” at its disposal, Mulloy said.

According to athletic director Joe Gurdak, this will be the last boys soccer team at Black River High. The school is scheduled to close after the next school year, with students expected to have Green Mountain Union and Mill River as primary choice options.

“We won’t have enough players for a team next year,” he said.

Windsor goes to Green Mountain on Friday.