Dallas Soccer DFW

FM Marcus finishes perfect season with state title

Published 4/15/2007 10:15:08 AM by Staff from Dallas Morning News

Anointed the preseason favorite to win the state title, Flower Mound Marcus' boys fought off all challengers and capped off a perfect season Saturday night with a 3-2 shootout victory against Plano West in the Class 5A final at Round Rock ISD Stadium.

"We've been No. 1 all year," Marcus coach John Gall said. "We've had a target on our backs the size of Texas. And you know what? We've been so good, and I'm so proud of the kids."

Victory didn't come easy Saturday for Marcus (30-0), the nation's top-ranked team. Marcus had to hold off an inspired and gritty Plano West team that overcame a 1-4 start in District 9-5A play to get to the state title game.

"Marcus is an excellent team, and I think we proved that we are just as good as they are," Plano West coach Jimmy Dowell said. "It was a fun game to watch. It was a fun game to coach."

Marcus sat on a 1-0 lead – gained on Sean Meller's score off a nice flick pass from Andres Angulo 10 minutes into the second half, setting up a frenetic final 13 minutes in regulation.

Plano West got the equalizer when Ryan Trammell headed in Jared Stigall's corner kick at the 13:05 mark. Plano West then took the lead five minutes later when Stigall's shot was redirected into the net by a Marcus defender. Stigall was credited with the score.

But, before the ball was put back into play, Stigall was issued a red card and Plano West was forced to play a man down. That advantage lasted only six minutes when Marcus' Miles Kruzich was given a red card at the 2:24 mark.

Marcus then tied the match when Angulo, who was named the game's MVP, hit a charging Glen Marshall in stride for the tying goal with 1:45 remaining in the second half.

"It was one of the most intense games of the season with all the emotions involved in the game," Angulo said. "I was nervous, scared, happy. Incredible."

Sam Garza, who suffered from severe back spasms and could hardly walk after Friday's semifinal against Brownsville Rivera, secured the shootout when his shot scurried past the goalkeeper and into the net.
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