No. 6 Mount Hebron rallies past No. 7 Hammond, 3-2

Vikings overcome deficits of 1-0 and 2-1

High Schools

Girls soccer

October 03, 2001|By Kevin Van Valkenburg | Kevin Van Valkenburg,SUN STAFF

Showstopper.

In a word, that's Mount Hebron senior Julie Napolitano, who was up to all her usual jaw-dropping tricks in a come-from-behind 3-2 girls soccer victory over Hammond yesterday.

For starters, there were her two flip throw-ins in the second half. Neither affected the outcome, but that didn't make them any less awe-inspiring. Both throw-ins won plaudits from the home crowd as well as the visiting one.

And then there was her goal, an unassisted effort in the 63rd minute in which Napolitano weaved her way through at least four defenders before she beat Bears keeper Tara Zammichieli with a perfect shot inside the far post, tying the score at 2-2.

"That's just Julie," said Mount Hebron coach Willie Ibarra. "She's the best player in the county, and she just does those kinds of things. As soon as I saw her make that run, I knew it was a goal."

Napolitano's play couldn't help but overshadow a competitive match. No. 6 Mount Hebron (6-1, 3-0 league) came in expecting a hearty challenge from No. 7 Hammond (7-1, 2-1), which had turned heads across Howard County last week by upsetting Centennial.

In the end, however, it was the Vikings who showed talent and resiliency, overcoming a 2-1 second-half deficit, then getting the game-winner from junior forward Kelyn Laws in the 76th minute. Laws' goal was especially satisfying to her because it was her yellow card that gave Hammond its first goal on a free kick by Ashley Pietryka.

"It was really a great win," Laws said. "We needed this momentum. I knew after I got that yellow card, I needed to do something to make up for it."

The Bears did wear down trying to chase the Vikings' speedy front line for 80 minutes. Still, even when Mount Hebron rallied to tie the score at 1-1 on a goal from Tricia Coburn, Hammond came right back to take the lead again on a goal by Jessica Basso off a nice throw-in from Meaghan George.

"I think we played very well," said Hammond coach Pete DiMarco. "Tara [Zammichieli] was on her game and kept us in the game in the first half. We just got a little tired, and Julie is such a great player, she took advantage."

Said Napolitano: "We knew we were going to bounce back and score, and once we did, we played solid defense."

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