Fallston's Tammy Kloiber was prepared for the attack of nervousness this time, but the result was the same.
A year ago, Kloiber made a clutch save in the penalty stroke shootout at the state Class 2A field hockey tournament finals.
Yesterday, she stopped two shots in the stroke-off as Fallston downed Middletown, 2-1, in the state semifinals.
"I didn't know what was happening last year, but I was really prepared for this one," said Kloiber, the Cougars' junior keeper. "We have practiced penalty strokes every day and I was ready.
Kloiber, who repeatedly had thwarted Middletown with kick saves, used two gloved-hand saves to set up teammate Nicole Clark's game-winning penalty stroke, a flick into the upper right corner of the net.
"I never scored any goal this big," said Clark, who also celebrated her 17th birthday yesterday. "I had two goals during the season, but this was great. We've been coming back all season to win close games."
The Cougars, 11-3-1 under coach Alice Puckett, will face J.M. Bennett in Saturday's Class 2A championship at Goucher (2 p.m.)
J.M. Bennett defeated Glenelg in the other Class 2A semifinal yesterday, 1-0.
In Class 3A semifinal action yesterday, Calvert held off Liberty, 1-0, in a penalty stroke shootout as Elena Moore scored the only goal. She had lifted Calvert over Northern last Thursday in the regional semifinals with a game-winning penalty stroke.
"Elena is great in the clutch and our keeper Jenny Prowinski got her 13th shutout," said Calvert coach Mary Finley.
Calvert will meet Magruder Saturday at Goucher (2 p.m.) for the Class 3A championship.
Magruder edged Bel Air, 2-1, in a penalty stroke shootout yesterday. Jenny Heyob got the game-winner.
In the Class 1A semifinals yesterday, Easton nipped Joppatowne, 1-0, and Pocomoke stopped Francis Scott Key, 2-1.
In Class 4A semifinals tomorrow at Goucher, Bethesda-Chevy Chase faces Walter Johnson and Severna Park meets Westminster. Both games are at 3 p.m.
Saturday's Class 1A and 4A championships at Goucher begin at 11:30.
In the girls Catholic League soccer tournament, St. Mary's downed Mercy, 3-1, and John Carroll shut out Catholic, 3-0, in semifinals yesterday at Patterson Park.
The winners meet tomorrow for the championship at Twardowicz Field (6 p.m.) with a consolation game kicking off at 4.