Eastern Wayne drops heart-breaking shootout affair
By Ryan Hanchett
Published in Sports on May 8, 2013 1:46 PM
No amount of time was going to decide the N.C. High School Athletic Association 3-A state first-round playoff game between Gray's Creek and Eastern Wayne on Tuesday night.
Not 80 minutes of regulation.
Not 20 minutes of overtime.
Not 10 minutes of sudden death.
In the end, penalty kicks led to the Bears' 2-1 victory over the Warriors at Little Big Horn.
"In the playoffs it seems like every game comes down to one goal," Eastern Wayne head coach Jorg Wagner said. "Tonight was a great game, a matchup of two teams at eye-level, and it just didn't go our way."
Eastern Wayne (11-5-0 overall) controlled the pace of play early, but found few scoring opportunities. The teams played rugged, defensive soccer throughout a scoreless first half.
Play began to pick up in the second half as both teams got their offenses going. The Warriors finally jumped ahead 1-0 in the 61st minute when Megan Mozingo collected a deflection and raced up the left sideline. Mozingo caught the Gray's Creek keeper off the near post and slid a shot into the net.
The game appeared to be going in the Warriors' favor as time ticked away in the second half. That is until the 78th minute when Katie Caylor fired a shot from 25 yards out that floated over the Eastern Wayne keeper and into the net to tie the game at 1-1.
Both teams played tight defense in the overtime period and neither side recorded a single shot. The same story held true in the 10-minute sudden-death portion of the game. After the horn sounded for the final time, both teams were instructed to lineup their five penalty-kick shooters.
Each team missed its first attempt.
The Warriors fired wide again in the second round and watched as Caylor tallied the first shootout goal. The third shooter for each side missed before McKenna Dove tied the shootout tally at 1-1 to open the fourth round. The Warriors' elation was short-lived as Leah Plunkett scored and put the Bears back on top 2-1.
Eastern Wayne's final shooter fired wide right and ended the contest.
"In the sudden death, I think both teams were tight and trying not to lose the game," Wagner said. "I thought we had a really good chance to win if it went to penalty kicks, but tonight Gray's Creek was just a bit better."
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