Technology High School Head Coach Melissa Knoll was hoping to leave the program with back-to-back NCS Division Championships. Instead, her team ended up suffering a case of déjà vu. In a rematch of last year’s Division 3 Championship, the St Bernard Crusaders of Eureka bested the Titans 3-2, scoring a goal with less than 30 seconds left in regulation.
Why was this game a case of déjà vu? Well, because last year the Titans won in the same fashion. Last year the Titans and Crusaders were locked in a 0-0 deadlock until the Titans broke through with less than one-minute remaining to win the game and championship.
Games like Saturday are why sports are so cruel. The Titans entered the second half with a 2-1 lead but weren’t able to close the deal. Most won’t see the raw emotion showed by the Titan players after the game was over. Knoll and her coaching staff had to console a number of players who were overcome with emotion. Last season was filled with joy and happiness, while this year was the opposite feeling.
As for why the Titans came up short. Knoll blamed the team’s mistakes.
“Their first goal was off our player, so it was an own goal,” Knoll said. “Then the second goal just went right over Emma’s head, she misjudged it in the air. It should have been a 2-1 game.” Knoll was adamant the Titans were the better team overall, but mistakes were their undoing. She also said having younger players wasn’t why the mistakes happened.
For those who don’t follow the program; the Titans lost eight seniors from last year’s championship team. All 8 of these girls were starters last year, so it took the team until midseason to really find their stride.