After winning a double-overtime thriller against Bloomsburg in the first round of the PIAA District 4 Class A tournament on Wednesday, the South Williamsport girls soccer team proved it has the fortitude and resilience required to make a push for the district title.
But for those still questioning the Mounties' mental resolve and big-play ability, the South Williamsport girls proved their toughness yet again on Saturday, as they added another overtime playoff victory to their rsum, topping Meadowbrook Christian 2-1 in 82 minutes.
"I was glad we ended the game a little sooner this time," South's head coach Elizabeth Deljanovan said with a laugh. "I think they all played very, very well.
South Williamsport’s Kiersten Betz (8) attempts to gain possession of the ball from Meadowbrook Christian's Madison Burrows in the first half Saturday at Loyalsock. View additional photos at cu.sungazette.com.
"They played with a lot of heart, and a lot of team unity. These girls really support each other," she said.
The Mounties dominated throughout most of the game, outshooting the Lions 18-8, while controlling possession of the ball for seemingly the entire game.
"We executed the game plan," Deljanovan said. "We knew we had a lot of depth and a lot of people to run, so we made the most out of those opportunities."
South scored its first goal in the 19th minute, when Miranda Young was dealt a nice assist from Chelsea Rieppel at the top of the penalty arc and caught Meadowbrook goalkeeper Sarah Marks out of position.
Despite its stingy defensive performance and offensive pressure, the South Williamsport squad found itself in some hot water midway through the second half, when Meadowbrook's senior striker Madison Burrows broke loose and chipped a beautiful left-footed kick to the upper right corner of the goal that tied the game up at 1-1 in the 63rd minute.
Unscathed, the Mounties regained their composure and kept the ball on Meadowbrook's side of the field for most of the remaining time in regulation.
"We had to be patient, convert on our opportunities, and trust that more opportunities were going to come," she said. "These girls are tough. They have played together for a long time."
Once in overtime, the Mounties' offense began to play even more aggressively, and quickly overpowered the Lions. They scored their game-winning goal just two minutes in, as sophomore Anna Steer scored on an assist from Miranda Young.
"That was beautiful," Deljanovan said. "She is a gamer."
"All game we had been talking about keeping the ball wide, and distributing to the forwards. So she knew her role, but we told her that if she got her opportunity to rip it, and that's what she did."
With the win, South Williamsport will play their next game in the district quarterfinals against Millville on Tuesday.
SW, Miranda Young (Chelsea Reippel), 20:54. MC- Madison Burrows, 62:54. SW- Anna Steer (Miranda Young), 82:29.
Shots: South Williamposrt 18; Meadowbrook Christian 8; Corners: South Williamsport 4, Meadowbrook Christian 1; Goalies: SW- Kelsey Gantz (3 saves). MC- Sarah Marks (11 saves)