Wildecats run out of rallies

Wilde Lake's season of comebacks ends in shootout loss to Urbana in final

Urbana 2 (4) Wilde Lake 2 (2)

Girls soccer Class 3A

November 16, 2007|By Katherine Dunn | Katherine Dunn,Sun Reporter

The Wilde Lake girls soccer team could not have given Dave Procida any more effort in his final game as its coach.

The No. 5 Wildecats came back and came back until they could come back no more in last night's state Class 3A championship. After battling Urbana to a 2-2 tie through two overtimes, the Wildecats finally fell, 4-2, in a penalty-kick shootout at Broadneck.

In regulation, the Wildecats (15-4) rallied from 1-0 down to take a 2-1 lead in the 77th minute. In the shootout, they came from 3-0 down to pull within 3-2 before Urbana's fifth shooter, Kelly Mohns, scored the game-winner.

The Wildecats have gotten used to battling back.

"Overall our entire season, we've had three starters get injured and really, it's only made us stronger," junior striker Faryn Watts said. "From the beginning of the season, we've progressed and each game, we've just gotten better and better."

Last night in winning their first state title, the Hawks (11-3-1) took the lead when Julia Roberts rocketed a shot into the upper right corner from about 40 yards in the fourth minute.

The Wildecats, who struggled early against the Hawks' defense of four flat backs, adjusted their typical formation of three strikers and three midfielders.

"We had to change to four in the middle to slow them down," Procida said. "It took us a little while to get the feel for attacking with that shape, but once we got it, we had tons of chances."

Caitlin Duff and Watts scored within 10 minutes of each other to give the Wildecats the 2-1 edge, but less than a minute later, Roberts hit another long shot off a restart from 25 yards.

"Up 1-0, I knew it wasn't a safe lead," Urbana coach Chuck Nichols said, "and sure enough they responded. When they went up 2-1, I was very, very anxious, but our character shined through as well and we responded immediately with that second goal."

Both teams had chances in overtime, but the Hawks got the jump on the Wildecats in the shootout. Roberts, Katie Ruhe and Amie Ruhe scored, and the first two Wildecats fired high.

Skye Fishbein and Duff then brought Wilde Lake within 3-2 before Mohns sealed the Hawks' third penalty-kick victory in this year's playoffs.

katherine.dunn@baltsun.com

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