Girls Soccer: Michelle Ryczek powers Ridgewood into sectional
Updated: May 12, 2012 7:47PM
Ridgewood faced a team Saturday in its Class 1A Regional championship game that it lost to during the season, but it didn’t let the past get in the way of its third regional crown in four years as the Rebels bested Guerin 3-0 in River Grove.
Michelle Ryczek scored twice to lead the Rebels. The senior now has four goals in two playoff games this year.
Ridgewood (8-11-2) opened the scoring less than seven minutes into the second half as Ryczek fought off a defender and nudged the ball past goalkeeper Olivia Binkowski.
“I had one girl on my side, and I just outran her and sort of poked it in,” Ryczek said. “I got motivation from the halftime speech, where Coach [Kenneth Caslin] gave the example of the Bulls’ Derrick Rose being marked but still scoring 30 points. We just have to find a way around the markers.”
Less than 10 minutes later, sophomore Cettina Nardulli found herself with time and space inside the arc and slotted home the insurance goal that made it 2-0. Ryczek netted a free kick goal, her third of that variety in the playoffs with 39 seconds left for the exclamation point.
“We always tell our center midfielders to have a shot outside the 18,” Caslin said. “If you’re in the middle of the field and have your momentum going forward, shoot it. We need to take chances like that. That’s what I want.”
Guerin (6-12-2) wasn’t able to put the Ridgewood defense under as much pressure as it did last time that led to their late game-winner. This is the second consecutive year Guerin has fallen in the regional final at home. Ridgewood hosts the sectional round that begins on Tuesday.