River Hill, Hebron push, pull to 0-0 tie

Vikings goalie Porter makes 15 saves

even OT breaks are split

Girls soccer

High Schools

October 19, 2001|By Kevin Van Valkenburg | Kevin Van Valkenburg,SUN STAFF

The back of the net was a pretty quiet and lonely place when Mount Hebron and River Hill got together for a girls soccer match yesterday.

The same could not be said for the rest of the field.

There was pushing and swearing, and elbows and emotions were exchanged between the two talented soccer rivals. But in the end, all either team could claim was pride, as No. 5 River Hill and No. 9 Mount Hebron played to an emotional 0-0 draw.

"It was intense," said River Hill's Jamie Goertler. "You didn't want to fall down after the play, because you could easily get kicked or run over."

For the Hawks and Vikings, the game wasn't about records or county titles - both River Hill (8-2-3 overall, 4-1-3 in county) and Mount Hebron (8-3-2, 4-2-2) trail Hammond (11-1-1, 6-1-1) in the standings. It was about bragging rights, as much as anything.

"River Hill brings out the best in Mount Hebron, and Mount Hebron does the same for River Hill," said Vikings coach Willie Ibarra. "That's just part of what's great about soccer in this county. You live for games like this."

Both defenses played well, but things truly came down to goalkeeping, which was strong at both ends. Mount Hebron's Kaitlin Porter played one of the best games in the county this season, making 15 saves, several of them sprawled on the grass, denying what looked to be sure goals for the Hawks. She faced 17 shots and constant pressure from throw-ins and corner kicks.

"There was a lot of talking between our two teams before the game," Porter said. "A tie isn't that bad, but near the end of the game, I think we both showed we really wanted this win."

River Hill's Erin Ferguson was almost as good at the other end of the field, making eight saves, and was at her best in the game's biggest moments. She turned back several Vikings chances in the second overtime to preserve the tie, River Hill's third straight draw.

"I knew that I was not going to make a mistake this time," said Ferguson, who was frustrated with herself after a poor game in a 2-2 tie with Hammond Tuesday.

Hawks fullback Megan Buescher and Vikings midfielder Julie Napolitano clashed all day, including on Buescher's long throw-ins, which Napolitano consistently headed away from the Vikings goal.

River Hill's Kara Lewis and Mount Hebron's Jessica Molitor both had breakaway chances stuffed by the opposing goalkeeper in overtime, but that was as close as either could get.

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