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Sterling Heights, Utica, Grosse Pointes

October 23, 2012

Utica Ford soccer advances to regional finals after defeating Grosse Pointe South

By Mark Vest
C & G Sports Writer

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Utica Ford II junior Costa Wells makes a play on the ball during a regional semifinal game against Grosse Pointe South. Wells scored two goals in the game to help lead the Falcons to a 3-0 victory.

FRASER — Entering its regional semifinal game against Grosse Pointe South, Utica Ford II hadn't allowed a goal all postseason, and that trend continued Tuesday, as the Falcons defeated South 3-0 and earned the right to advance to the regional finals.

Coach Teri Steinwascher credits a change in mentality for the remarkable run Ford has been on in the postseason.

"They decided they wanted to win," she said. "They didn't like the losing part of it, they didn't like tying, and they decided to kick it up. I simply said I expect more, and they did it. They knew they had more.It's all on the boys."

Junior Tyler Hughes also has an idea as to why Ford is moving on.

"Great team work, great communication," he said. "Each game we're progressing. (Goalkeeper) Kyle Kline's keeping the net fine back there, and we keep putting the balls in the back of the net."

Ford junior Costa Wells helped take the pressure off of his team by scoring two goals within approximately eight minutes of each other, and with less than 28 minutes left in the first half, the Falcons had a 2-0 lead.  Ford carried that lead into halftime.

A goal by Alek Nesterovski in the second half gave the Falcons their third and final goal.

Ford goalkeeper Kyle Kline helped his team maintain control of the game by not allowing any shots to get past him, for the fourth consecutive contest in the postseason.

Although South coach Stefan Harris is disappointed his team's season has come to an end, he is pleased with the kind of effort that helped the Blue Devils walk away from the season with a district championship.

"Every game, I've been happy with my team's effort," he said. "Do we have the (same) skill as a lot of teams? No. But our heart and our work ethic has got us this far, and I couldn't be more proud of these guys."

Ford entered the postseason having finished fourth in the Macomb Area Confference Red Division. But in the district tournament, the Falcons showed they are capable of taking their play to a different level, shutting out all three of the teams they faced en route to a district championship.

With a win in the regional tournament now under its belt, Steinwascher is hoping Ford can carry the momentum it has built into the regional final game against Birmingham Groves, scheduled to be played at 6 p.m. Oct. 26 at Fraser High.

"If they give it everything they got, we're going to be OK," she said. "If they give it everything they got and we lose to a better team, there's nothing you can do but be proud of them."

You can reach C & G Sports Writer Mark Vest at mvest@candgnews.com or at (586)279-1112. Twitter Follow Mark on Twitter.