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Eastside eliminates Indians in semifinals

Keystone’s Juan Grimaldo receives a throw-in.

Keystone’s Juan Grimaldo receives a throw-in.


BY CLIFF SMELLEY

Staff Writer

Keystone Heights High School got the rematch it wanted, but in the end, it was Eastside coming out victorious again as Tyler Miller-Jones scored a pair of second-half goals in an approximate three-minute span to lift the host Rams to a 2-1 win over the Indians in a Class 2A boys’ soccer regional semifinal match on Feb. 4.

“We played well enough to win,” Keystone head coach Trevor Waters said. “It just didn’t happen.”

Wyatt Graziano scored the lone goal for Keystone (22-4-2), which was playing without leading scorer Cory Hedding. Hedding sat out his second straight match with a foot injury.

“Not an excuse,” Waters said. “Eastside played very well tonight.”

It was the second straight win for Eastside (2-6) over the Indians. The Rams defeated Keystone 1-0 for the District 5 championship.

Waters said he was proud of his team’s effort—not just against Eastside, but also in the quarterfinals against Mount Dora.

“When you lose in the district finals, it’s very disappointing to the whole team,” Waters said. “It’s very hard to come back and win that next game. It’s so much easier if you win the finals. Then you come back, and you’re on top of the world.

“This team showed me such great heart.”

Eric Wood chases after an Eastside shot that’s wide of the mark.

Eric Wood chases after an Eastside shot that’s wide of the mark.

Keystone goalie Eric Wood (foreground) hits the ground after getting airborne to make a save.

Keystone goalie Eric Wood (foreground) hits the ground after getting airborne to make a save.

Eastside’s Joseph Malu (foreground) and Ray Trimble vie for a throw-in.

Eastside’s Joseph Malu (foreground) and Ray Trimble vie for a throw-in.

Ray Trimble finds himself between two Eastside players.

Ray Trimble finds himself between two Eastside players.

Nacho Grimaldo (right) holds off an Eastside player.

Nacho Grimaldo (right) holds off an Eastside player.

Nacho Grimaldo pushes the ball upfield.

Nacho Grimaldo pushes the ball upfield.

Nacho Grimaldo (left) and Eastside goalie Cody Peterson battle for control of the ball.

Nacho Grimaldo (left) and Eastside goalie Cody Peterson battle for control of the ball.

Juan Grimaldo (right) and Eastside’s David Lopez battle for a throw-in.

Juan Grimaldo (right) and Eastside’s David Lopez battle for a throw-in.

Juan Grimaldo (right) kicks the ball upfield for Keystone.

Juan Grimaldo (right) kicks the ball upfield for Keystone.

Keystone’s Wyatt Graziano (right) attempts to get the ball from Kim Mueller.

Keystone’s Wyatt Graziano (right) attempts to get the ball from Kim Mueller.

Wyatt Graziano

Wyatt Graziano

Wyatt Graziano chases down a bouncing ball.

Wyatt Graziano chases down a bouncing ball.

Zach Fairbanks controls the ball for Keystone.

Zach Fairbanks controls the ball for Keystone.

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