Boys soccer | Palmetto claims fifth consecutive district championship

2nd-half surge enough to carry Tigers by Osceola

jlembo@bradenton.comJanuary 26, 2013 

SEMINOLE -- Zach Reda trapped the ball with his thigh, spun and gave Palmetto the spark that ignited a run toward another district championship.

There was nearly an entire half to play in Friday's Class 3A-District 10 final.

But the moment Reda's goal from 30 yards out settled in the back of the net, the trophy belonged to Palmetto.

Moments later, the Tigers toasted a 4-1 win over Seminole Osceola, giving Palmetto its fifth straight district championship and a first-round home game against Tampa King when the Region 3 tournament kicks off Wednesday.

"I saw the right side open a little bit," Reda said. "I was able to keep it low, and I snuck it in."

Reda gave Palmetto (22-1-3) a 1-0 lead less than 10 minutes into the game, but the Warriors (14-6-5) tied it up on Ben Brai

nard's header during the 29th minute.

"I think we had a pretty good discussion at the half about getting back to our game a little bit," said Tigers coach Dustin Dahlquist. "Once we gave up that goal to Osceola, the game changed. We got lucky to get into the half only tied, because Osceola was really pressuring us. ... There in the second half, we moved the ball quite a bit and looked like we probably should have looked in the first."

The Tigers kept the ball in Warriors' territory for the remainder of the half following Reda's goal but were turned away by goalie Joey D'Alessandro, who had eight saves, including four diving stops.

"Their goalie was phenomenal," Dahlquist said. "He kept them in the game all night."

Thanks to Gregorio Calvillo, however, the Tigers busted through. Calvillo headed in a corner kick from Pedro Calvillo, and 40 seconds later, netted a laser from about 20 yards.

"That's as good a strike as you can ever see. I don't think I know anyone who can make it any better," Dahlquist said. "That was huge, and that was the ballgame then at that point."

Following the postgame handshake, the Tigers ran over to the Palmetto fans cheering from the bleachers and took some celebratory photos.

"My first district championship," said Reda, who transferred from Lakewood Ranch. "Words can't describe it."

It wasn't the first one for Dahlquist, though that didn't make it any less special.

"They do everything that you ask and they give you everything that they have," he said. "I don't think as a coach you can ask any more from your players than for them to show up ready to work.

"I have zero complaints about these guys."

Bradenton Herald is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service