It may have taken more than 97 minutes of play, but Waubonsie Valley was finally able to solve New Trier's Laura Martorana en route to a 1-0 double-overtime victory in the quarterfinals at the Naperville Invitational on Thursday night at Naperville Central.
In a battle between the tournament's previous two champions, New Trier carried the play for the opening 10 minutes of the game, but after that Waubonsie Valley settled in and assumed control of the game.
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Despite controlling the ball for large periods of time, Waubonsie Valley (7-4) couldn't break through. The Warriors just missed on a free kick and a corner kick in the first half, but the game was scoreless at halftime.
"We got some good touches and shots off, but we couldn't bury them," Waubonsie Valley senior Megan Green said. "Their goalie made some really good saves too, so that was frustrating."
New Trier continued to tread water in the second half, as Waubonsie Valley put together some of its best chances of the game.
However, Trevians goalkeeper Martorana kept slamming the door closed, including two great saves with 16 minutes left in regulation. Martorana went completely horizontal to make an initial save off a point-blank Waubonise Valley shot, then swallowed up the rebound attempt to keep the game scoreless and eventually force overtime despite being outshot 12-3 through regulation.
"After awhile I was getting really angry," Waubonsie Valley sophomore Jenna Romano said. "We've been working the most on possessing the ball and getting our shots off, but that goalie was really good. At halftime and before overtime, we were saying that we were dominating, but it would be so horrible if they were to get a fluky goal. We were working hard because we needed a goal really bad."
As the first overtime started, New Trier seemed revitalized. The Trevians had two corner kicks and outshot the Warriors 2-1 in the first overtime but couldn't find the back of the net.
Finally, in the second overtime, Waubonsie Valley capitalized as Romano fired a goal inside the left post to claim the victory for the Warriors.
"I just got in front of the girl, and took a touch to set myself up," Romano said.
Waubonise Valley has won four straight and appear to be hitting their stride after a lot of turnover from last year's state championship squad.
"We've all heard it a lot, especially in the beginning of the season, and we weren't confident," Romano said of people writing off the Warriors after losing key cogs from a championship team. "Everyone doubted us, and we had to step up and prove a point. We have a lot of freshmen, and it took time and practice to get going. We play for each other and we have been working hard."