Here are our some of our top moments of 2010 – some local, some not so, and in no particular order of preference. If you have anything to add that was memorable for you, please add. A very, merry Christmas to all, and have a kicking new year!
The World Cup: As to be expected, there were many highlights within a rather large highlight as South Africa hosted the World Cup. Spain emerged as winners for the first time in the nation’s history, after beating the Netherlands in a somewhat dour final. Top U.S. moment was Landon Donovan’s dramatic injury time winner against Algeria, which sent Bob Bradley’s men through to the last 16, where they lost to Ghana in overtime. Another star to make the headlines was Paul the oracle octopus, who predicted correctly all of Germany’s seven encounters and the final itself. Alas, Paul departed for the great sea in the sky after he died in October.
Two class soccer: The moment that the IHSAA announced in May that high school boys’ and girls soccer would be divided into two classes come the fall of 2011 was the moment that certain smaller schools started dreaming of long post season tournament runs and maybe even a state title. The cut off point for the revamped tournaments – to be based on school enrollment – will be known in the spring following the next classification realignment.
OT Pioneer winner: Providence’s overtime clincher against the Highlanders in the sectional semi-final is so far one of the best goals I’ve seen since covering local girls’ high school soccer. It was rather apt that it was superbly finished off by Casey Marlin, who broke all manner of records in her junior year (top all-time Providence scorer at 59; most goals in a season with 29), but it was the searing 60 plus yard run by defender Leah Mattingly, leaving a number of Floyd Central players in her wake, and her delivery to Marlin, that made the goal special. Providence went on to win sectional and bowed out at regional to eventual state finalist Columbus North, coached by Jeffersonville’s Mike Spock.
Save clinches regional for Jeff: Jeffersonville goalkeeper Cauldon Feldhaus dove to his left to stop Cameron Hensley’s shot, giving the Red Devils a 5-3 penalty kick victory over Trinity Lutheran for the team’s third regional championship, and first since 2005. “To be honest, I totally guessed,” said Feldhaus. The Red Devils (18-2) lost to Washington at semi-state.
School shocks in Louisville: Soccer powerhouses St Xavier and Sacred Heart, both winners of boys’ and girls’ Kentucky state titles respectively for the past three years, crashed out of their respective tournaments on the very same night. Minnows Louisville Collegiate tamed the Tigers, while DuPont Manual overcame the Valkyries on penalties in a game played over two evenings. Collegiate would later lose to Central Hardin the quarterfinals, while Manual made it to the final four, where it lost to eventual winner St Henry.
Déjà vu for New Albany: It was a case of déjà vu as New Albany, for the second successive year, beat rival Floyd Central on penalties after a scoreless encounter. The Highlanders had gone through the entire season unbeaten, securing the Hoosier Hills Conference along the way.
CAI forces shootout: Beaten 6-0 by the Pioneers during regular season, Christian Academy of Indiana was in no mood for a repeat result. Following a 1-1 tie after overtime, and penalty kicks tied at 3-3 with just one shot remaining for both teams, CAI goalkeeper Tyler Stumler’s effort dramatically hit the crossbar and sped downwards, but was adjudged not to have crossed the line when it bounced off the turf. Ben Orem made no mistake with the last penalty, sending the Pioneers to the championship game, where they lost to Jeffersonville.
Providence wins . . .oops, no it doesn’t! Those who witnessed it said they had never seen anything like it before. With just 20 seconds left, and the game tied at 3-3, Providence took the lead when Pierce Crawley notched his hat-trick. However, Pioneer celebrations were short-lived. In fact, they lasted as long as it took Jennings County’s Matt Flora to kick the ball from the restart at the halfway line perfectly into upper left hand corner of the net to tie proceedings at 4-4.
US loses World Cup bid: Matching the disappointment of the U.S. losing to Ghana at the World Cup was the awarding of the 2022 tournament by FIFA to Qatar. At one stage considered a strong favorite, the U.S. bid (which included the Colts’ Lucas Oil Stadium as one of the possible venues) lost out to the Persian Gulf nation the size of Connecticut amid allegations of a corrupt selection process driven by oil money. Bah, humbug. Russia won the right to host the 2018 World Cup.