Sports

Bangor Christian kicks its way past Southern Aroostook

DYER BROOK, Maine — Anything can happen in the playoffs and Tuesday’s Class D North girls quarterfinal between No. 6 Bangor Christian and No. 3 Southern Aroostook proved precisely that.

In a back-and-forth game through two halves in regulation time and two overtime periods, the No. 3 Warriors and No. 6 Patriots battled to a 3-3 stalemate, sending the game to penalty kicks.

Bangor Christian (10-5-1 overall) won the coin toss, elected to kick first and promptly netted three of its first four penalty kicks, while Southern Aroostook was only able to net one, giving the upset victory to the Patriots.

The Warriors end their season with a 12-3 record.

“We have been practicing penalty kicks for about three weeks now,” Bangor Christian coach Dale Overlock said. “I was all set who my five kickers would be. They were ready to go and I was confident we could nail them.”

Junior Sydney Tozer, sophomore Michaela Stevenson and eighth-grader Hannah Sherwood each converted successful penalty kicks for the Patriots. Freshman Kacy Daggett had the lone penalty kick for SA.

Stevenson said she was nervous prior to taking the kick, but had faith in both herself and her teammates. Stevenson’s shot was to the lower-right corner of the net that SA goalie Sydney Brewer almost deflected as she dove to the ground.

Sherwood added she too was nervous. “I just picked the bottom left corner and went for it,” she said.

Tozer said she relied on a higher power to help calm her before it was her turn to kick. “I prayed a lot,” she said. “I have the same spot I go to every time. I am so excited. I had faith in us, we worked really hard and Glory to God, I can’t believe it.”

Southern Aroostook scored 11 seconds into the game as junior Kylie Vining took the opening touch from Kassidy Mathers and raced untouched to the 18-yard line before sending a high, arcing shot over the head of BC goalie Shannon Shaw, who had come out of the net to attempt a block.

Tozer tied the game with 23:10 to play in the first half as she received a through pass from Morgan Hobert and was able to beat Brewer with a low-lined shot to the corner.

In the second half, SA once again came out of the gate quickly as Emma Nadeau scored on a pass from Makaelyn Porter with 38:21 remaining. But as was the case in the first half, BC answered with Tozer collecting her second goal of the game just two minutes later on a pass from Michaela Stevenson.

BC took a 3-2 lead with 22:18 to play as Stevenson booted in an unassisted shot from about 20 yards out. Southern Aroostook countered with 12 minutes to play in regulation as Vining scored an unassisted goal.

Brewer made 12 saves on 17 shots for the Warriors, while Shaw had nine saves on 15 shots for the Patriots.

“We had some trouble on our flanks a little bit today,” Southern Aroostook coach Holly Vining said. “We tried to double Tozer, as she is one of the most skilled players I have seen in Class D this year.”

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