SEMINOLE — Seminole pulled a last-second victory out of a hostile environment and wet playing field Tuesday, defeating Osceola 3-2 to advance to Friday’s region finals. The Warhawks trailed by two goals with 12 minutes left to play and scored the go-ahead goal as the game announcer started the 10-second countdown.
“It’s all about belief,” Seminole coach Gary Kolb said. “We just kept believing in our ability to do it together.”
Sarah Reinhold found Tegan Payne at the net and Payne re-directed it into the net with five seconds left.
“I couldn’t hear the crowd, I couldn’t hear my teammates, all I could hear was the announcer counting the seconds, “seven, six,”’ Payne said.
Despite controlling the action most of the first half, Seminole could not get any shots to fall. With six minutes left, Osceola’s Samantha Pifer chipped the ball to Cassidy Reich, who lifted it over the keeper for the first score. In the last two minutes, Warriors keeper Kristina Kulavic, who had seven saves in the first half, stopped a big Seminole push.
“It was extremely frustrating, we had five or six opportunities and we had them on their heels all night,” Kolb said.
Osceola scored again 10 minutes into the second half as Reich set up Pifer with a shot that she banged off the far post and in for a 2-0 lead.
With 12 minutes left, Gabrielle John played what looked like a cross from the right but it richocheted off the keeper and in for Seminole’s first goal. Just a minute later, Olivia Red sent a cross into the box that found Brandy Maulucci, who banged it into the net to tie it at 2-2.
“We watched Miracle before the game last week and we scored two goals in the last 6:25,” Kolb said. “We watched it tonight before the game and we scored three goals in the last 12 minutes, that might become a tradition for us.”