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SOCCER: Edmond (Okla.) Santa Fe's late goal gives Springdale first loss

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SPRINGDALE -- A late goal helped Edmond (Okla.) Santa Fe hand Springdale High a 2-1 defeat -- the Red'Dogs' first of the season -- Saturday during the NWA Showcase at Jarrell Williams Bulldogs Stadium.

Jesus Barroso (8) of Springdale High heads the ball as Navid Chowdhury of Edmond (Okla.) Santa Fe defends Saturday during the Northwest Arkansas Showc...

NWA Democrat-Gazette/BEN GOFF @NWABENGOFF Richie Godinez (10) of Springdale High and Sworup Thapa (13) of Edmond (Okla.) Santa Fe chase the ball Satur...

Springdale stayed on the attack for most of the match, especially in the final 22 minutes of regulation after Santa Fe (2-2 overall) had evened the score at 1-all. But Wolves senior Zach Howell slid in behind the Bulldogs' defenders on a set piece to chip in the game-winner in the 75th minute. It was just the third goal Springdale (4-1) had allowed all season.

"I felt good about where we were at in the last 20 minutes or so of the game," said Springdale coach Donald Beeler. "We were getting goal scoring opportunities, but just kind of fell asleep on that set piece. There was some miscommunication back there about responsibilities and that's something that you get sometimes at this point in the season.

"It's disappointing that we weren't a little more disciplined to take care of that, but this is a good learning experience."

Inclement weather resulted in the cancelation the final three matches of Saturday's slate while also resulting in a slick surface as rain grew heavier during the second half. That aided Santa Fe senior forward Dante Brigida in escaping pressure for the Wolves' match-tying goal in the 47th minute.

Brigida, an Oral Roberts University signee, broke free by outracing Springdale's Salvador Gonzalez in a one-on-one situation before depositing a left-footed shot into the right corner pocket of the goal.

"The kids had good spirits and had fun as far as managing the weather, and sometimes this kind of weather is not fun," said Santa Fe coach Joe Peeler. "On wet turf or grass like this, it's really hard on the keepers because the ball skids and just doesn't bounce true, so they've got to know when to come out and how to handle it in this weather."

Springdale took a 1-0 lead when Luis Garcia scored off of a perfectly placed corner kick by Gonzalez. Garcia's shot deflected off a Wolves' defender who was camped out on the left side of the goal.

Following Brigida's game-tying goal, the Red'Dogs steadily attacked Santa Fe keeper Reed James. They took eight shots, including three on goal, but couldn't get any by James to take the lead. Perhaps the best run at James came off the foot of Richie Godinez. His high shot from just inside the 18-yard box caused Reed to arch backwards as he jumped to block the ball, which defelected off his hands and off the cross bar.

Sports on 03/12/2017

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