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Rowdies & Refs Ruin United Quest's Day

April 14, 2002

The ladies of United Quest's '88 White squad visited the home turf of the Forsyth Rowdies Soccer Club on Sunday after more than a week's break from both practice and game action. They played nice soccer for sixty of the seventy minutes they were on the pitch, but the combination of early unfavorable decisions by the referees and a late lapse by their own defense proved the undoing of a hard day's work by the Quest players.

The Rowdies Red squad capitalized on a foul in the first half when they were awarded a penalty kick by the young center referee for a slight touch that appeared to occur right at the edge, but outside, of the penalty area. The ensuing PK was well taken and just barely avoided the outstretched arms of Quest keeper Ana Trujillo who had guessed correctly on the direction of the shot. Even though the run of play had been evenly competitive, Rowdies found themselves up 1-0. The United girls did not fold and played aggressively for the remainder of the half. Several nice crossing passes were served into the Rowdie penalty area by Quest forwards and midfielders, and United came very close to tying the match when Amanda Masters redirected one of the passes just over the crossbar. The girls seemed energized by their near misses and kept the pressure on the Rowdie back four. One sequence near the end of the first half saw the ball lofted high and very near the Rowdie goal. The Forsyth keeper positioned herself well, but she fumbled the catch, which left a loose ball on the turf in front of the Rowdie goal. Several Quest players were crashing the goal for a possible rebound, but Meagan Dilbeck beat everyone to the ball. She slotted her shot past the keeper for the equalizer. Another frantic Quest attack on the Forsyth goal featured a loose ball seemingly punched over the goal line but snatched back by the keeper before the center ref or the assistant referee had a chance to spot the goal. The half ended a few minutes later tied at 1-1. The Quest side had battled back into a match that legitimately had favored them from the opening minutes, but spectators were left wondering why the score wasn't 2-1 in favor of United Quest when the half-time whistle sounded.

The second half began with several nice sequences by both squads. Both offenses looked threatening, but defenders were setting the tone at both ends of the field. On several occasions, the Quest midfield looked poised to take control of the match, but the final, forward-liberating pass could not be produced. United forwards did a good job of coming back into the middle of the field for the ball, but were frequently swarmed by pesky, ball-chasing Forsyth defenders. The center of the United formation was frequently compressed to one side or the other and loose balls in the middle of the field were being won by the Forsyth side with alarming regularity. Still, the Quest squad bent a little, but refused to break. Keepers for both sides were mildly tested, but were easily stifling the soft shots coming their way. The score remained 1-1 until very late in the game when aggressive, attacking play from the back became a tactical liability for United Quest. A numbers-depleted Quest defense found themselves chasing a swift Rowdie forward on a breakaway down the right side with no help behind them. A stride-for-stride foot race occurred between the Rowdie forward and a determined Quest defender, and the United goalkeeper converged on the pair as they approached the eighteen. Unfortunately, the ensuing collision of bodies failed to stop the momentum of the ball and it nestled softly into the back of the net to put the Rowdies up 2-1. United Quest was snake-bitten once again and failed to find a second equalizer before the end of regulation. Quest played well, but Rowdies notched the win. last week's highlightsnext week's highlights