SOCCER: Brewer's historic season ends with loss to John Carroll
Staff Reports, Hartselle Enquirer
The Brewer Patriots fought hard but came up short in the Class 5A quarterfinals against unbeaten powerhouse John Carroll Saturday. The home-standing Patriots dropped the match 3-0, ending their season with a record of 16-4-1.
It ended a historic season for Brewer, which advanced to the playoffs for the first time in school history and also picked up its first playoff win in school history with a 2-1 win over Decatur. Earlier in the season, the Patriots won the program's first county championship.
"This is the eighth season that Brewer has had varsity soccer," coach Michael Drinkard said. "We started out in 2000 with just a few exhibition games and then in 2003 we started area play for the first time. We sat down recently and just wrote down all the firsts we accomplished this season – our first wins over Decatur, Athens and Arab; our first playoff win; our first county championship.
"We had some great senior leadership and we're going to miss them, but hopefully now we've got some younger guys who will come back next season and help this program take that next step."
John Carroll took an early lead off an own goal from the Patriots.
"It was just one of those things where the ball came into the box and one of our guys tried to clear it," Drinkard said. "It took a weird bounce and went in our goal, but that sort of thing happens in soccer and you've just got to work through it."
The Cavaliers increased their lead to 2-0 shortly before halftime on a goal from Alex Kuklinski.
Chase Zanaty scored in the second half to close out the scoring for John Carroll.
Brewer senior goalkeeper Sawyer McLemore made 13 saves for the Patriots, who were out shot 14-8. Both teams had six shots in the second half.
"We had our chances on offense, we just couldn't find the back of the net," Drinkard said.
John Carroll (24-0-1) advanced to the state tournament in Huntsville, where it will face Briarwood in the Class 5A semifinals Friday.