SOMERS, N.Y. – For 88 minutes, Somers was knocking on the door but just couldn’t capitalize in a Section 1 Class A quarterfinal against Tappan Zee.
But in the first overtime, Ella Kittredge crossed the ball past a charging Tappan Zee goalie and Megan Dineen was there to finish to give fourth-seeded Somers a thrilling 1-0 win over the No. 5 Lady Dutchmen on Oct. 28.
“The whole game we were just waiting for the perfect opportunity to capitalize,” Kittredge said. “I saw their goalie coming out and I knew Megan was coming across. I just had to touch it across and she was there to finish.”
The goal came with 1:17 left in the first overtime.
“We knew we had to play smart and hard,” Dineen said. “It really came down to who wanted it more. We had a game plan, we executed it and just came out as hard as we could. I really have to give it to Ella. She worked hard throughout the entire game. She got down to that ball and was able to slide it across to me and I tapped it in.”
Somers had its chances all game. Dahlia Pepe was on the doorstep early in the second half but Tappan Zee keeper Kennedy Outlaw cut off the angle and made the save. Kittredge crossed a ball to Angelina Hurtado with five minutes left in regulation, but she was a split second late.
“I feel like they played with intensity the whole game,” Somers coach Paul Saia said. “They kept pressuring and pressuring and it just kind of felt like eventually it’s going to happen and eventually it did happen. I couldn’t be prouder of these girls. They never gave up and they kept pushing and pushing. I just told them, ‘You’ve got 20 minutes left in overtime and you’ve got to give it everything you have. There’s no such word as tired at this point.’ And they played that way.”
Tusker goalie Rachel Ross, who finished with eight saves, made a critical kick save on a Tappan Zee fast break just a minute into overtime. She also punched away a ball on a corner kick midway through the second half in what was one of Tappan Zee’s best opportunities.
It was the 13th shutout for the Tusker defense, which has only allowed six goals all season.
“The defense is very strong,” Dineen said. “We have Jordan May in the middle. She plays as hard as she can every single game and so does Alexis at sweeper. It’s just a pretty solid defense. I’ve got to give it to Kayli McMorrow, Kayleigh Kenny and Alexa Vanga. They all work together so well.”
“And having Rachel back there is huge,” Kittredge added. “They’ve been talking all season really well and they’re able to stay organized. We have a lot of trust in them.”
Somers (15-2-1) will travel to top-seeded Rye for a 4 p.m. semifinal on Thursday, Oct. 31.
Somers 5, Hen Hud 1
In the opening round, Somers disposed of visiting Hendrick Hudson in a 5-1 win on Oct. 25.
Karlene Kurtz netted two goals and passed for an assist. Dineen and Pepe each had a goal and an assist. Vanga also scored. Jessica Rodriguez and Danielle Acocella notched assists. Ross made four saves.