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European edition, Friday, May 18, 2007

RAMSTEIN AIR BASE, Germany — Thanks to the cool of International School of Brussels sophomore Lukas Lanwehr, defending champion Heidelberg won’t appear in the boys European Division I soccer championship game for only the second time since 1996.

With 10 minutes to play Thursday evening, Lanwehr beat the Heidelberg defense and the mud to score the decisive goal in ISB’s 2-1 semifinal victory.

ISB was the seventh team to reach a European final Thursday. The Raiders will play the winner of the Patch-Lakenheath semifinal which was being played as this edition of the Stars and Stripes went to press.

In other finals, the Kaiserslautern girls will play Ramstein at 4:30 p.m. in Division I; the Bamberg boys will take on Milan at 2:30 p.m. for the Division IV crown; and the Brussels and Alconbury girls will meet for the fourth time this season at 12:30 p.m. for the D-IV girls title.

The Bamberg boys stopped Ankara 3-1, Milan’s boys routed Brussels 6-1, Alconbury girls stopped Bamberg 3-1 and the Brussels girls blanked Milan 3-0 in semifinal games.

ISB boys 2, Heidelberg 1: Lanwehr ran onto a through ball from his defense and outran Heidelberg’s sweeper to the top of the box. He waited for the goalkeeper to commit, and then pushed the ball to the keeper’s left. “It got stuck in the mud, but I got it out,” Lanwehr said of the breakaway. Heidelberg took a 1-0 lead on a shot by Kevin Beerman, and Matt Witte tied it just before halftime.

Ramstein girls 4, ISB 0: “It’s fun playing in the rain,” Ramstein sophomore Macy Jepsen said after scoring two goals and assisting on one in the opening 20 minutes on the muddy field which will host eight championship games over the next two days. “We were ready to play.” All-Europe selection Lauren Williams and Stephanie Silvey added the other goals for the undefeated D-I conference champs, who improved on their 1-0 victory over ISB during the regular season. “We didn’t really play well up there,” Jepsen said after an aggressive Ramstein effort that produced three corner kicks in the first 10 minutes. “Today we really stepped it up.”

Kaiserslautern 3, Patch 1: Between the mud and a well-organized Patch defense, the Lady Raiders were unable to score until the teams had played 100 scoreless minutes. “We were stressed when we couldn’t finish the way we were used to,” Kaiserslautern junior striker Liana Knight said of her team, which averaged more than three goals in its past four games. “There were times I could have taken shots, but the mud stopped me.” Knight took the game’s decisive shot, when her penalty kick into the right side of the net gave Kaiserslautern an insurmountable 3-1 lead.

Bamberg boys 3, Ankara 1: “We’re very happy,” said Bamberg coach Wade Krauchi, who had predicted that his team, just 2-4 during the regular season, would be a title contender. “This is the highest we’ve ever been in Europeans.” Jake Dominick, Eric Suarez and Andrew Duque scored for Bamberg to set up the title game match against Milan. Milan has outscored four opponents 22-2. The girls and boys Division II amd III round-robins opened Thursday. Defending boys D-III champion Hohenfels blanked Sigonella 6-0 and D-II boys champion SHAPE beat Baumholder 2-0. In girls play, D-III top-seed Hanau stopped defending champion Sigonella 5-0. In D-II, No. 8 Black Forest Academy held No. 1 SHAPE to a 0-0 tie.

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