Cleveland tops Bradley in quarterfinal

Cleveland tops Bradley in quarterfinal

October 14th, 2012 by Gene Henley in Sports - Preps

Cleveland soccer coach Andy Byrd

Photo by Tim Barber/Times Free Press.

CLEVELAND, Tenn. - Cleveland coach Andy Byrd could find only one superlative to describe his soccer team's performance in its District 5-AAA quarterfinal defeat of Bradley Central.

Victorious.

The Lady Raiders were simply that, scoring a goal in each half for the 2-0 win at Bradley. They will face top-seeded and ninth-ranked Soddy-Daisy in a semifinal Tuesday at 7 p.m.

McMinn County and Ooltewah will battle in the other semifinal after 3-1 and 2-0 wins, respectively.

Saturday served as some revenge for Cleveland, which lost in overtime to the Bearettes during the regular season.

"Ultimately, I didn't think we played our game," said Byrd, who earlier in the week recorded the 100th win of his coaching career. "It was an emotional game, but we were fortunate to get a win today.

"We can't play that way against Soddy on Tuesday."

Cleveland (8-6-5) was able to take a one-goal advantage on a free kick by Lorne Conn in the ninth minute. The Lady Raiders held that lead late into the second half, which caused Bradley to start pressing in hopes of getting the equalizer. The Bears' best opportunity came on a turn-and-fire shot from Haley Yarber from about 18 yards out.

With about five minutes remaining, Hope Haas scored from about 20 yards away when her shot skipped under Bradley keeper Tara Blackwell's hands.

"I thought we played well," Bradley coach Tiffany Walker said. "We didn't capitalize on some chances, but we fought and gave it all that we had.

"We were just unlucky today."