SPRINGVILLE—The Springville-Griffith varsity boys soccer team probably had one of its biggest turnouts of the season for Senior Night, and despite a torrential rain downpour during most of its contest against Iroquois, won its first home game of the season 1-0.
The Griffins had been knocking on the door in so many previous contests that being on the favorable end of the final score was well overdue. In addition, it was against one of the best teams within the division’s Erie County Interscholastic Conference III.
While the win will give Springville some momentum as it heads to the playoffs, it knocked Springville from second place to third for playoff seeding and allowed Pioneer to secure the second spot behind first-place undefeated East Aurora.
Michael Spagnola’s long kick from the left side of the field found its way past the rain and the Iroquois keeper about 30 minutes into the game for a 1-0 lead. Adam Pruitt would do his part in net the rest of the way to secure the team’s second win of the season.
While the Springville offense was at its best during the first half with a few really good scoring chances highlighted by a shot off the crossbar by Robert Clark, the defense really stepped it up in the second to help Pruitt survive the Chiefs’ attempt to tie the game.
“Since [Pruitt’s] come back from injury, he’s been more focused, more aggressive and just really into the game more,” said head coach Tom Szczerbacki about his goalkeeper’s double-digit save performance.
“Not only was I impressed with [Pruitt’s] play, but I really liked our back four today. Woodson Hooker, Wyatt Cudney, Etan Keyser, Eric Einarsson and even Dylan Noeller when he was in, they all did a really nice job.”
Pruitt lost his previous two starts in some of his best play of the year that included a 1-0 loss in double overtime at Lakeshore and a 4-3 loss at Pioneer – a game that saw Springville rally from three goals down to a 3-2 halftime where Pruitt may have played his best game of the season despite allowing four.
Another player who appeared to make a difference in solidifying the team’s recent successful play was sophomore Wyatt Fuller.
“I called up [Fuller] from junior varsity about four games ago and he’s been really strong on the ball despite his small size,” Szczerbacki said. “He puts himself in good position and if he loses the ball, he’s right back on it trying to win it back.”
The boys soccer team heads to playoffs against an undetermined pre-quarterfinal opponent sometime this week after its scheduled contest against St. Francis was cancelled.