Oct 17, 2013 Phil Blackwell Uncategorized
Somehow, someway, girls soccer games between Marcellus and Westhill turn out to be memorable occasions, and Wednesday night’s clash proved no different.
Both teams led, both teams blew their leads, and that combined with changing weather elements and strange occurrences, made the 2-2 draw between the Mustangs and Warriors compelling theater again.
Marcellus carried a 14-1 record and state Class B no. 3 ranking into its regular-season finale, while Westhill, at 11-1-2, held the no. 11 state ranking.
That lone Warrior defeat had come to the Mustangs back on Sept. 10, a 2-0 decision made memorable by Westhill goalie Sam Peebles, whose spectacular 19-save effort kept Marcellus from an even more lopsided victory.
Now they were at it again. Since it was Senior Night for Marcellus, head coach Laurie Updike started 11 of them, and they kept the game 0-0 for the first 20 minutes, including a save by goalie Lauren Soule before Maggie Fiacchi and Emily Buschbascher went the rest of the way.
But it was Peebles, again, that snared the spotlight late in the first half, first by sliding to handle Brielle Filtch’s chance in the 33rd minute, and even more so with 2:10 left in the half when she prevented Filtch from dribbling around her to an open net with a tackle.
That forced a penalty kick, and Peebles, guessing correctly, dove to her left to stop Filtch’s shot, and watched the rebound fly over the net, keeping it 0-0 going into halftime.
Energized by that stop, and picking up a wind advantage at the start of the second half, the Warriors organized some runs, and 3:30 into the half Jayanna Monds fed a low cross from the right side that Tatiana Monds flicked past Buschbascher just inside the left post, putting Westhill up 1-0.
Through much of the rest of regulation, Westhill’s defense, led by Shelby Stack, Sam Toscano, Brianna Helfeld and Kelly Lippert, did a tremendous job protecting that slim margin, breaking up all kinds of Marcellus attacks with deflections before Peebles, who finished with eight saves, could get threatened.
Westhill also got a bit of good fortune in the 49th minute, when Filtch’s free kick from right side banged off the right post and then nicked the left post, without going in the net.
And then it got crazy.
With 2:21 left, Filtch fed a cross to the middle, and it looked like a routine catch for Peebles – but the ball slipped through her hands and right to Abby Fallon, who fired home the tying goal.
They made it through the first 10-minute overtime period still 1-1, but even that included a midfield collision that sidelined both Tatiana Monds and the Mustangs’ Makenzie Felicia.
Then it started raining during the second OT. Marcellus went all-out on its attack and, somehow, got Fallon and Jada Sargeant behind the Westhill defense without an offsides call, and Fallon found the net with 4:43 to play.
Angry at the call, Westhill quickly attacked and forced a corner kick. With 3:45 left, Lindsey Lippert put the ball in the middle, and Jayanna Monds got her foot on it, putting home the tying goal.
They would stay even the rest of the way, and start to wonder what twists and turns a possible third encounter in the Section III Class B playoffs might bring.
One thing that Marcellus did win, though, was the outright OHSL Liberty American division regular-season, which it would have shared with Westhill had the Warriors prevailed.