For defending Class 2A state champion Hammond, almost nothing went right in Thursday's 2-1 sudden-death overtime defeat in the Region I girls soccer final against host Patapsco.
The bad luck began the night before, on Halloween, when starting goalie Emily Minah was hit in the eye with an egg, forcing her to miss Thursday's game.
The Bears (10-3) did get a break in the fifth minute of the game, when star forward Jackie Rieschick scored from 15 yards out for a 1-0 lead.
Patapsco goalie Theresa Wrzosek tried to clear a shot by Rieschick, but hit it right back at Rieschick who returned the kick for a score.
In the 20th minute, Hammond's bad luck continued, when sweeper Danielle DeCastro limped off the field. She returned later but was unable to play the important sweeper position.
Coach Dave Guetler moved Rieschick to sweeper, where she has played most of the year. But Rieschick had scored six goals in three games since being moved to forward, and her move back to sweeper stifled Hammond's offense the rest of the half.
Patapsco's offense definitely held an edge in the first half, forcing Hammond goalie Mary Sly-Bancaza to make five saves, while Patapsco goalie Wrzosek made only two.
Patapsco (12-1) tied the game on a controversial call. Rieschick was attempting to kick the ball back to goalie Sly-Bancaza from about the 20-yard line. Patapsco's star, Linda Bauer, tried to steal the ball and Rieschick was called for holding.
"Bauer definitely made a handball violation on that play," Guetler said.
"The ref didn't call it."
Instead, Bauer was awarded a direct kick from the 20-yard line in the 34th minute, and she scored off of it.
Hammond almost went ahead on a direct kick from the 20-yard line by DeCastro early in the second half, but Wrzosek made a diving save to her right knocking the ball out of bounds.
On a breakaway, Hammond star Samantha Andersch looked like she was headed for a score inside the 20-yard line, but she was called for elbowing a Patapsco player who was running behind her. Andersch was also given a yellow card.
A short while later, Bauer drew a yellow card for flagrantly grabbing her defender, Keisha Jett, by the shoulders and trying to throw her to the ground.
The entire game was highly physical and now things really began heating up.
Hammond also began dominating the game offensively, but was terribly frustrated.
Wrzosek made another diving save off an Andersch shot from just outside the box. Another hard shot from 10 yards by Andersch sailed over the post.
A hard shot by Andersch from 15 yards was saved by Wrzosek.
Wrzosek made three more saves, and regulation time ended with Andersch hitting a chip shot that just cleared the post and landed behind the goal.
In the fourth minute of overtime, following an injury timeout for Hammond's Lauren Choate, Patapsco mounted a sudden offensive charge.
Bauer took the ball down the left side, crossed it in front of the goal, and Barb Andrzijewski kicked it in at the far post.