October 17th, 2018

Tigers back on track with win over KCD

Jeff Woods 

Staff Writer 


Tigers back on track with win over KCD
The Tigers and Bearcats pregame / photo by Jeff Woods

Following an unlikely defeat at the hands of Collegiate in last week’s 26th district final, St. Xavier (19-2-1) responded with an emphatic 5-1 victory over Kentucky Country Day (13-6-1) in the opening round of the 7th region tournament Tuesday night.

“I was super excited,” said St. X coach Andy Schulten when asked about his team’s performance. “We got our confidence shook about a week ago. I was a little worried how we would respond, but I’m proud of them. I think they came out and fought like champions do and we focus on that. Champions are champions not because they win every game, but because they respond when they get knocked down.

“I was worried about our psyche and we kind of removed all doubts tonight.”

It wasn’t that the Tigers lost to Collegiate, but rather how they lost. St. X built a 3-0 lead only to watch the Titans rally with three goals of their own and eventually steal a win in penalty kicks.

There was no such drama Tuesday night against the Bearcats.

“Just coming off a loss, I was glad to see that we came out with that fire that I knew we would,” said senior midfielder Case Cox. “Starting early is huge. I knew going into it we needed a goal in the first 20 minutes or it was going to be a battle in the end.”

Cox put the Tigers in front 1-0 in the 16th minute when he scored on a penalty kick. Eight minutes later, Cox netted his second goal of the night to give St. X a 2-0 advantage.

In the second half, the Tigers continued to attack. Clayton Stanbery’s goal in the 44th minute gave St. X a 3-0 lead. However, the Bearcats would try to mount a rally of their own. In the 55th minute, Alex Pollitt put one past Tigers goalkeeper Jay Scott to cut KCD’s deficit to 3-1. This time, though, the Tigers effectively squashed any hopes of a comeback.

Conner George scored in the 60th minute to push St. X’s lead back to three. A few moments later, KCD was awarded a penalty kick but Scott made a fantastic save to preserve the 4-1 edge. Finally, AJ Chastonay put an exclamation mark on the night with a goal in the 69th minute for the Tigers’ fifth score of the evening.

“KCD is an excellent team,” said Schulten. “They didn’t give up. We could’ve had them in a couple different spots. They came back and scored a goal in the second half and had a PK and kind of kept it close. I’m happy with our guys. They faced a little adversity tonight and they didn’t buckle.”

With Tuesday’s win, the Tigers advance to the 7th region semifinals. They face Manual at 7:30 p.m. Thursday night at Eastern High School. St. X did not face the Crimsons in the regular season.

“I feel a little bit more comfortable having played teams,” said Schulten. “I know (Manual coach Bob Ramsey) is going to have his team ready to play. They’ve got some talent on that team and they’re certainly capable of pulling it off.”

 

 

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