Mason County, St. Patrick draw even in doubleheader

Two ties in rivalry games at Wald Park

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The battle for boys’ soccer dominance in Maysville couldn’t be decided last fall, as Mason County and St. Patrick drew even in both meetings, 3-3.

The two had a chance to determine the top dog in the first game of the season on Tuesday, but a late goal from Gavin Cracraft drew Mason County even with St. Patrick once again, 4-4.

Both teams came in with a new head coach – Michael Parsons with the Saints and Daniel Forsythe with the Royals.

For Parsons, it was a late call to lead the team and a slow start to preseason practice, but the draw is a step in the right direction.

“It’s a good building block,” said Parsons. “We had 13 or 14 [players] today, so it’s good to have that many when you just start out with six. It’s something to build on. It’s the first game.”

The Royals were the first on the board in the 12th minute, when a ball played toward the St. Patrick net crept in, but St. Patrick junior Marvin Koch found the equalizer just four minutes later when his right-footed shot got past Royals’ keeper Mario Soto.

The Saints made it three unanswered goals in a span of roughly five minutes to take a 3-1 lead. Pedro Briseno notched St. Patrick’s second goal of the game and season, when he played a corner off his head and into the net. Less than a minute later it was his little brother, Cesar Briseno, adding to the lead.

It looked as if it would be a two-goal deficit for Mason County heading into the break, but a penalty was called on St. Patrick and Brock Gilligan, who tied the second meeting last year on a penalty kick with three minutes left, stepped up to the spot.

His shot was saved by St. Patrick keeper Caleb Poczatek, but the ball rolled out of bounds for a corner kick in the final minute of the half. Anwar Perry crossed the ball into the box and found the head of Nicholas Thomas, who cut the deficit to one.

“Any time you score, I think puts you in a positive momentum, a positive mindset, so any time you can score – whether it’s in the first minute, or the 30th minute or the 90th minute – that is going to propel you in a positive direction,” said Forsythe. “These kids in the blue and white, they respond amazingly to any kind of goal scored and sometimes we get our heads too down when we get a goal scored against us, and that’s something we’ve been fighting last year and this year.”

Twenty one minutes into the second half, it was Perry getting involved again. Near the edge of the box, the Mason County sophomore cut the ball to his left foot and sent a low shot past the dive of Poczatek, drawing the two teams even again.

It was Koch with another answer with 15 minutes left, collecting a pass and beating Soto one-on-one to get the 4-3 advantage.

“I think Marvin played a fantastic game. He did really well. Anything I asked him to do, he did it,” said Parsons. “Pedro did good. We just need to bring the team together. There was a lot of interplay, but not a full-team play.”

Down, 4-3, in the closing minutes, Cracraft found a loose ball off a corner and hammered it into the back of the net with the outside of his right foot to bring the two teams even. But despite the result, the first-year Royals coach wanted more.

“I’m never happy with a draw. I’ve instructed my kids from the very beginning that a draw is a loss. That does not count on your win record. That’s the only thing anybody looks at, is the W’s,” said Forsythe.

“I think the thing we struggled with, even last year, was getting our motors running in the first five minutes. I know it’s the first game of the year. There’s a lot of rust to scrape off, but just get that motor going in the first five minutes,” added Forsythe. “We really picked it up at the end of the first half a little bit. We picked it up at the end of the second half when we knew there were dire circumstances, but we need to have that intensity for the whole 80 minutes.”

Each team falls to 0-0-1 with the draw. They’ll face off again on Sept. 20 at Mason County.

The Royals are scheduled to travel to Dixie Heights for a 7:30 p.m. game on Thursday, while the Saints’ next game will be the same day at home against Bath County.


The Mason County girls’ soccer team entered the season with three of their first four games against 38th District opponents.

St. Patrick entered the season after a year without a varsity girls’ soccer team.

For both, the early contests served as good measuring sticks.

The Lady Royals, coming off a 6-0 loss to Harrison County, were unable to find the goal in the second half on Tuesday as the Lady Saints’ defense held strong for a 2-2 tie.

“I think it’s a great measuring stick for us,” said Mason County coach Amy Cottam. “It helps us to kind of see where we’re at in comparison to those district teams and focuses us a little bit more on what we need to work on, what our strengths are and where we’re a little bit weak.”

Emylee Brophy got Mason County on the board early in the first half when she cut past a couple of St. Patrick defenders and hit a low shot with her left foot that got past the arms of Lady Saints’ keeper Justina Klee.

St. Patrick got on the board later in the half as Libby Gallenstein chipped in a shot from long range that got over the head of Mason County goalie Alexis Adams.

Rachel Payne was able to give Mason County a halftime advantage by taking the ball down the length of the field and firing a shot inside the post, making it 2-1.

Gallenstein got her second of the night in the second half while falling down, but got just enough on the ball to roll it into the net.

“I think Libby has been with the team for a while, so I think she deserved it,” said St. Patrick coach Javier Cardenas. “I think she put her effort and she put the team on her shoulders. She deserved that. She got it because she wanted to do it.”

From there, the Lady Saints and Klee, who finished with 12 saves in her first game in net, were able to frustrate the Lady Royals’ offense and hold them off the board for the draw.

“The result was pretty good. I’m proud of the girls and what they’ve done so far. We’re not even practicing all together and they came out with a very good result. I’m proud of them,” said Cardenas.

The Royals racked up 25 shots in total, but couldn’t collect on any of their quality chances late in the contest.

“Some of the calls didn’t go our way and that didn’t help us any in some of our drives toward goal, but just taking those shots, taking those risks and taking those opportunities as much as we can,” said Cottam. “Some games you’re going to have it where you sink it in the back of the net a lot and some games you’re not and this just wasn’t one of the games for us, but we definitely had the shots.”

Mason County falls to 0-1-1 and is scheduled to host Bourbon County on Thursday at 7:30 p.m.

St. Patrick moves to 0-0-1 and will host Bath County next Tuesday in a 6 p.m. game.

The games were the first the teams had played at the newly renovated Wald Park, which is scheduled to have an opening ceremony on Aug. 25.

“I think it turned out good. Great crowd. It’s great for St. Pat to have their first home game here,” said Wald Park supervisor LaMont Taylor. “It’s always good to see the kids playing on something built for them and to be here and see the kids and the excitement with the kids, players, both Mason and St. Pat and the fans. It’s been amazing.


MASON COUNTY —- -2-2—- -4

ST. PATRICK —- -3-1—- -4

Goals: (SP) Koch 16th minute, (SP) P. Briseno 20th minute, (SP) P. Briseno 20th minute, (MC) Thomas 40th minute, (MC) Perry 61st minute, (SP) Koch 65th minute, (MC) Cracraft 79th minute

Shots (On goal): Mason County 11 (6), St. Patrick 22 (12)

Corners: Mason County 4, St. Patrick 5

Saves: Mason County (Soto) 8 St. Patrick (Poczatek) 2

Records: Mason County 0-0-1, St. Patrick 0-0-1


MASON COUNTY —- -2-0—- -2

ST. PATRICK —- -1-1—- -2

Goals: (MC) Brophy, (SP) Gallenstein, (MC) Payne, (SP) Gallenstein

Shots (On goal): Mason County 25 (14), St. Patrick 5 (4)

Corners: Mason County 3, St. Patrick 3

Saves: Mason County (Adams) 2, St. Patrick (Klee) 12

Records: Mason County 0-1-1, St. Patrick 0-0-1

Mason County’s Brock Gilligan (white) battles with St. Patrick’s Pedro Briseno (9) and Allen Briseno (7) for possession near midfield, Tuesday, at Wald Park. The Royals and Saints played to a 4-4 tie. County’s Brock Gilligan (white) battles with St. Patrick’s Pedro Briseno (9) and Allen Briseno (7) for possession near midfield, Tuesday, at Wald Park. The Royals and Saints played to a 4-4 tie. Evan Dennison, The Ledger Independent

St. Patrcik’s Olivia Poczatek (green) possesses the ball while Mason County’s Ashleigh Spencer defends, Tuesday, at Wald Park. The Lady Royals and Lady Saints tied in the contest, 2-2. Patrcik’s Olivia Poczatek (green) possesses the ball while Mason County’s Ashleigh Spencer defends, Tuesday, at Wald Park. The Lady Royals and Lady Saints tied in the contest, 2-2. Evan Dennison, The Ledger Independent
Two ties in rivalry games at Wald Park



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