VALRICO - Tom Davison recorded a hat trick to lead Bloomingdale past Kissimmee Gateway 5-0 in Thursday's Class 6A region quarterfinals.
Bloomingdale hosts Palm Beach Lakes on Tuesday in a region semifinal. The Rams topped Greenacres John I. Leonard 3-0. Although the Bulls (23-2-1) are accustomed to scoring a lot of goals (including a 7-0 victory over Plant City in the District 6 final), by halftime, it looked as if it might be low-scoring affair.
Despite John Emery hitting the crossbar during the first minute and Bloomingdale peppering the goal for 13 first-half shots, the game was scoreless until Davison broke through off of a feed from Emery.
If not for the goalkeeping of Chris Sedlak, things might have gone differently as the Cougars (14-10-2) got great chances from speedy midfielders Daniel Loaiza and Oscar Ortiz.
"Those Spanish kids were controlling the game," said Bulls coach Sam Isajar, who is Colombian. "Our game is marking tight, and we weren't doing that at the beginning. I told my guys, "If you just let them take the ball, they're so good with it, they'll kill you.' In the second half, we marked a lot better."
After a halftime tongue-lashing by Isajar, the Bulls made the most of their first opportunity, a goal by Davison off a cross from Grant Novitski in the 41st minute.
Davison completed his hat trick seven minutes later, finishing a long ball from Jay Ayers.
Emery got a breakaway goal in the 52nd minute, and Novitski scored two minutes later, tapping in a cross from Davison, who has 20 assists and 33 goals this season.