Boys Varsity Soccer
Game Summaries & Headlines.
- Game Date
- Oct 23, 2019
- REDBIRDS: 2
QUINCY SR HIGH SCHOOL: 1
Redbird Regional Win Over Quincy
EDWARDSVILLE — Alton’s 2-1 semifinal victory over Quincy at the Edwardsville 3A Regional had plenty of meaning to the Redbirds, and to head coach Nick Funk.
It marked his first win over Quincy as head coach of the Redbirds and it was Alton’s first regional victory under Funk, who’s in his fourth season as AHS head coach. But to listen to Funk, it was obvious what was most important to him.
“We get to play Friday,” Funk said as his players celebrated winning the nail-biter at the District 7 Sports Complex. “That’s the most important thing. It was a hard one to win.”
Indeed. Justin Davison and Braden Schrimpf combined for the game-winning goal with 13:30 remaining in the second half following a near-goal by Quincy at the other end of the field.
Playing out of the Blue Devils’ offensive end, Davison and Schrimpf combined on a near-perfect give-and-go that ended when Davison blasted a shot from right wing about 20 yards out. The ball eluded Quincy goalie Frank Heck and put the Redbirds ahead 2-1.
“It was a really nice goal,” Funk said. “Both our goals were.”
Brayden Decker gave the Redbirds a 1-0 lead in the first half on an assist from Adam Wong.
The victory means No. 5-seeded Alton (6-10) will take on top seeded Edwardsville (17-4-1) for the regional championship at 4 p.m. Friday.
“Edwardsville handled us twice this year,” Funk said, “so we know what we’re up against.”
The Tigers, who blasted Granite City 7-0 in Wednesday’s first semifinal, defeated the Redbirds 3-1 Sept. 17 and 1-0 Oct. 8 at Edwardsville.
The Blue Devils won the opening coin toss and elected to take the wind and gusts up to 20 mph at their backs. But the Redbirds scored first and came out of the half tied 1-1.
“It worked out OK for us,” Alton assistant coach Tim Henson said. “We played really well in the first half.”
Despite playing against the wind, Decker scored off an assist from Wong with 14:53 remaining in the half to make it 1-0
Quincy’s Bryant Alexandre scored to tie it at 1-1 with 8:23 left in the half on a play that started on a corner kick by Keaton Hull.
The Blue Devils came out strong in the second half, but the Redbirds, led by goalie Owen Macias, kept them at bay.
Macias, a junior, made four point-blank saves in the second half, including one of Quincy’s Andrew VanderMaiden with 25:58 left, on the Blues Devils’ Hull with 19 minutes remaining, one on Evan Altman with 17 minutes left and another on VanderMaiden with 12:01 left.
In addition, Quincy was able to get the ball past Macias twice, but each time the Redbirds’ defense was there to clear it off the goal line.
“Owen played a great game,” Funk said. “He’s gotten better and better as the year went on. He was just learning how to play goal last season and he’s come a long way.”
Funk said that while his team was prepared for Quincy, the Blue Devils nonetheless threw some wrenches into the works.
“I thought Quincy had the best of it the first 10 or 11 minutes of the second half,” Funk said. “They have a formation they like to run, a 2-3-2-3 and it can give other teams problems because they know how to run it and we don’t know how to defend it very well. But they went to a 4-5-1 and we were able to hold on.
“We have to be ready for Edwardsville, ” funk said, “but it’s going to be a little hard to come down from this win, though. It means a lot to our program and to these players.”