MAYFIELD - It has been nearly a month in coming, but the Mayfield Panthers finally raised the winner's trophy for the Mayfield Booster Club Soccer Tournament.
Dylan Toscano connected for three goals and an assist, while Todd Briggs and Jordan Ryder had two goals apiece and and one from James Winsman as the Panthers claimed the championship with an 8-0 victory over Catholic Central.
"I think we were really ready for tonight, even after our game last night," said Toscano, who increased his season goal-scoring total to 27. "Waiting a month to play the match was different, but worth it."
Mayfield’s Dylan Toscano prepares to strike a shot against Catholic Central in the championship game of the Mayfield Booster Club Soccer Tournament on Saturday at Mayfield High School. (The Leader-Herald/James A. Ellis)
Mayfield’s Anthony Ashbey (14) cuts the ball back against Catholic Central defender Ryan Farrar (26) during the game. (The Leader-Herald/James A. Ellis)
The championship match was originally scheduled to be played Sept. 15 but severe weather conditions forced a change to the tournament schedule.
Mayfield wasted little time putting its first score on the board as Winsman finished off a drop pass from Toscano 3:10 after the kickoff.
The Panthers kept the pressure on with strong runs and quality attempts that just missed their marks. Toscano broke through for his first goal of the match, a 15-yard drive with 21:22 left in the opening half, to open a 2-0 advantage.
Just under 10 minutes later, Toscano struck again, this time sending a left-foot shot from 18 yards out into the netting.
Ryder picked up his first goal of the night after he touched a pass to Josh Ivancic and received the ball back to finish for a 4-0 advantage with 2:09 left in the half.
Ryder assisted on Toscano's third goal with 81 seconds remaining in the opening half for a 5-0 halftime lead.
The Panthers showed no signs of a second-half letdown as Briggs connected for a pair of goals in the opening five minutes to stake Mayfield to a 7-0 advantage.
Ryder came close to picking up his second goal of the match when he hit the post and then put the rebound on net only to have Crusaders second-half goalkeeper Dylan Pollak make the stop.
Ryder would not be denied his second goal as he finished off a pass from Briggs for the Panthers' final goal of the match.
For the match, Mayfield out shot Catholic Central 14-3. Robert Jones and Pollak combined to make six saves in goal for the Crusaders, while Ryan Hennessy and Luke VanNostrand combined for a three-save shutout.
Names to the all-tournament team for Mayfield were Ryder, Toscano, Hennessy and Eric Wilcox, while Justin O'Brien, Sam Matthews and Ryan Farrar were all-tourney selections from CCHS. Austin Roney and Sean Green represented Middleburgh on the squad, along with Waterford's Kyle Elliott and Josh Orton.
Middleburgh won the consolation match, 3-2. Green, Roney and Brody Smith scored for Middleburgh (4-7-2 overall), while Nick Castle and Quintin Cahrenger tallied for Waterford.
With the victory, Mayfield ran its winning streak to 10 games after dropping the first three matches of the season.
"At the beginning of the year we did not play well against Galway and even though we lost to Mekeel Christian and Berne-Knox-Westerlo, I felt were were on our way to turning the season around," Mayfield coach Jon Caraco said. "We played a Class A team tonight. Playing a non-league game this late in the season is tough but the win tonight gives us a little more confidence and momentum heading into a tough final week and sectionals."
The Panthers (10-3 overall) will face Western Athletic Conference foes Galway, Northville and Mekeel Christian this week on Monday, Wednesday and Friday respectively, to close out the regular season. Mekeel Christian is the final home match before sectionals.