Bloomingdale's Jill Mott performed an unusual maneuver just before the biggest penalty-kick shootout of her high school soccer career in Friday's Class 4A girls state soccer semifinal game. She bent over, put her hand on the ball and executed a 360-degree turn.
Mott's fifth-round penalty kick was good, giving the Bulls a 4-3 shootout advantage and the Bloomingdale girls soccer team a 2-1 victory over Coconut Creek of Fort Lauderdale Friday night. But just what was she doing?
"In practice we've been doing the 360-degree turn for good luck," said Mott. "But I only did it once because I didn't want to get busy. It sure worked tonight."
The Bulls (16-3-0) will attempt to win their first 4A girls soccer title when they play the state's top-ranked team, Longwood Lyman (27-0-0) at 7 p.m. tonight. Lyman was a 4-1 winner over Miami-Killian in Friday's other semifinal game.
"It's a tough way to lose a game," said Bloomingdale coach Jo Garber. "Both teams played outstanding. I don't like a game that ends this way, but we will take it."
The Bulls were outshot 44-18 by previously unbeaten Coconut Creek (22-1-0), but allowed only one goal on a Kara Sparks header with 12 minutes left in the game.
Christina Reccord scored the Bulls' only goal when Coconut Creek keeper Maggie Smith came out to stop a Heather Ott shot and the ball popped loose. Reccord had an empty net and tapped the ball in for the goal.
"There is nothing in the world like scoring a goal into an empty net," said Reccord. "Especially in a game like this."