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Sports Archives — The Altamont Enterprise, November 13, 2008

Dutchmen’s flight to state title cancelled

By Jordan J. Michael

CAMILLUS –– A magical season by the Guilderland boys’ soccer team came to an end on Friday night at West Genesee High School.

The Dutchmen received their first loss in 23 games, 1-0, in a regional final against Baldwinsville. “We had a great run, but the two previous games left us beat up,” said Coach Mike Kinnally.

The coach was referring to an overtime win against Shaker and a 3-to-2 victory over Shenendehowa for the Class AA title. “We didn’t have much time to celebrate before the next game,” Kinnally said this week. “It still hasn’t fully set in.”

Guilderland faced a “very good squad” on Friday and the ball ended up bouncing Baldwinsville’s way.

The only score of the game came early on a broken goal kick by Dutchmen keeper Devin Bailey. The back of Chris Talone’s leg got a piece of Bailey’s goal kick and it bounced to Baldwinsville’s Ryan Evans. He had a one-on-one with Bailey and didn’t miss.

“You can’t make mistakes in games of this magnitude because they cost you dearly,” said Kinnally. “It was a tough way to start and we had an uphill battle.”

Guilderland played on a synthetic turf field, instead of the usual grass. Top offensive threats Tony Campagnano and Sahr Nyuma were not 100 percent. Starting defender Jonathan Wheeler was out due to injury.

“You can’t go this deep without all your guns,” Kinnally said. “I’m not one to make excuses, but I’d love to play them on a field of grass.”

Baldwinsville was the most talented team the Dutchmen had played all year long. “We were evenly matched with them. We did better than them in the middle but their defense was solid,” said Kinnally.

Guilderland had a handful of scoring chances near the end of the match. Nyuma rang a shot off the crossbar with five minutes remaining.

“You never want to lose during a run like this,” said Kinnally. “It was hard on my team but I think they’ll be okay.”

How about next year?

The Dutch were only the second team in Suburban Council history to go undefeated and untied. Shenendehowa did it in the late 1980s.

Don Snyder, who founded Guilderland’s soccer program and coached the varsity team from 1964 to 2002, is amazed by this year’s team. He had seven sectional titles, including back-to-back titles in 1996 and ’97.

 “They really had the whole package; tremendous speed, ball control, and tough to the ball,” Snyder said. “Twenty-two wins? Not even a tie? None of their players will be on a greater team then that. It goes down in eternity.”

“Kinnally has a nice system going and the team will be in good shape for a long time,” said Snyder. “Coaching depends on the types of players you coach. He does the job.”

Kinnally has watched the team improve steadily ever since he took the job in 2003. “I took over a team whose coach had been there three years before I was born,” he said. “We won five games the first year, then 10, then 15, and now 22.”

Guilderland will lose 12 players to graduation and it will retain 12 more. “We’ll lose some great players but we have a lot of good players surfacing,” said Kinnally.

Starters Rory Nunamacher, Campagnano, Ryan Ashbaugh, Kip Stillman, Nyuma, Patrick Quinn, and Travis Moore will move on.

“This team will always have a level head. It’s about scoring more goals and giving up less,” Kinnally said. “Our goal is to remain in the conversation.”

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