The Battle of West Seneca is always a big deal for the rival schools, no matter the sport or setting.
So a playoff win was a nice feeling for the West Seneca East girls soccer team.
Sophomore Karlie Mann scored the game’s lone goal three minutes into overtime and the Trojans posted a 1-0 win over rival West Seneca West in a Class A-1 prequarterfinal on Tuesday at the West Seneca Soccer Complex.
“Any time East and West play it’s fun and exciting,” East coach Jeff Bauda said. “The kids all know each other, they’re all friends, and it was nice to get one on them today.”
West Seneca East had its opportunities, collecting 17 shots on goal but couldn’t beat West goalkeeper Jordyn Jaworski in regulation time. Mann, the Trojans’ leading scorer all season finally opened the scoring in the first overtime session, her 10th of the season.
“It was a great pass from Hailey Cenname from out wide,” Mann said. “It was to the corner and the goalie was more towards the left post so I just took the shot. It was really great to beat our rival like that. I don’t know, I’m just speechless.”
The Indians had some chances but couldn’t put the ball in the net. Amanda Weiner made nine saves for her third shutout of the season for the Trojans.
The win was the second of the season for East over West but this one was much tougher than the 3-1 win on Sept. 26. Opportunities were abound at the complex on Seneca Street and a nice crowd was treated to a game with a playoff atmosphere.
“It was a really good game,” Bauda said. “Both teams had opportunities, both teams put pressure on each end. Fortunately we were finally able to get one there but it was a good game,”
The playoff win was the first since 2014 for the Trojans. West Seneca East (6-11) will play at top-seed Grand Island (15-1) at 6 p.m. Thursday in the quarterfinals.
“Grand Island is the top seed and obviously a big challenge,” Bauda said. “All we can do is focus on what we can and that’s making sure we play our game. We’re going to fine tune some things in practice and get ready for Thursday night.”
Meanwhile, West Seneca East was shut out for the 11th times this season. The Indians scored just 13 goals this season, seven of them coming in two blowout wins over Jamestown.
“That’s kind of how our season has gone,” West Seneca West coach Jenn Bell said. “We just haven’t been able to score many goals and found ourselves defensively most of the game. It was a good goal and we weren’t able to capitalize on the few opportunities that we had.”
West, which has six freshman and just three seniors on the 21-player roster, finished the season at 4-13.