Above: John Walitsch following his final VC
Warriors Go Down With Their Boots On 2/5/08
finishing 7th in the WCAL this season, the Warriors were tasked with
playing second seeded Mitty in the first round of the playoffs.
Mitty finished behind Bellarmine, with a 10-2-2 record.
The game was played at Mitty, and on their wet, but
surprisingly firm field. The grounds crew was on hand to make sure
that the field was taken care of, but as it turned out, there was no
rain during the game.
Knowing what was on the line, the Warriors took the field to face Mitty.
In the two meetings this year, the Monarchs won 2-0 in both.
The game started high paced as usual, with Mitty threatening VC's backup
'keeper, Danny Hittler, early and often. The Warriors defense did
well to keep Mitty off the scoreboard, until about 15 minutes into the
Mitty player took a loose ball in the box, and converted from 10 yards
with a left footed blast that found the upper corner of the net.
"That was a very untimely goal for us. I thought Danny was well
positioned, but you're never going to save a shot like that.
Fantastic goal for Mitty." Basanese said regarding Mitty's goal.
The game went to half with the Warriors trailing 1-0.
In the second half, VC switched to 3 forwards up top to try for the
"I asked the guys at half if they wanted to keep it close, or go after
it. Everyone wanted to go after it, and so did the coaches.
So we switched to three up top and decided that if we're going down,
we're going down with our boots on." Basanese said.
The pressure would help as VC had several scoring chances in the second
Trevor Plug took a nice pass from Alex de Leon and got in alone with the
keeper. His shot was saved, but it represented the will that the
Warriors showed in the second half.
Eventually, Mitty got another goal after Hittler made a great save.
The Mitty player was waiting near the penalty spot, and finished the
rebound into the open net.
Danny would be called on again later in the game when an interesting
penalty call led to a Mitty PK. Danny read it perfectly and dove
to his right to save the shot, no rebound.
"They say that the ball doesn't lie on penalties, and they didn't
deserve that PK. Danny was big for us today, I'm extremely proud
of him, that was a great save in an important time." Basanese
The final whistle blew on the Warriors season, with a 2-0 defeat to
Coach Basanese will remember this season fondly, though it will be tough
to say goodbye.
"This senior class is awesome. The kids who will be graduating are
young men that I'm really proud of. They battled all year, through
injuries and guys playing out of position. We had solid
leadership, and they kept us going all season long."
"I'm going to miss each of their personalities, and spending time with
them, frankly. It's never easy, but this year it's really hard for
me to say goodbye. "
"As for this game, I challenged the kids to give everything they had.
I really felt like that's exactly what I got from them, and for that I'm
really thankful. These young men can each hold their heads high,
we hung with a great team today." Basanese concluded.
The Warriors will gather a few more times before the season ends, this
Thursday the 7th, and March 3rd for the Winter Awards Banquet.
Stay tuned to the websites for updates regarding awards!
John Basanese took some amazing pictures at the game.
They can be seen here.
Thank you Mr. Basanese!!
VCSoccer.com Man of the Match: Kevin
VC Starting Lineup: Hittler, Walitsch,
Seaman, Cardoza, Cordeiro, Tarangioli, Joseph, Reyes, Rosa-Diniz, Fahmy,
Alex de Leon
Game time: 11am
Weather: Cloudy, cold, windy