The heart and the effort were there for Grayslake North's girls soccer team as it pursued a regional championship on Friday night.
The desired result, however, was not.
In trying to get past top seed Deerfield, the No. 8 Knights came up short 2-0 in the Class 2A regional final at Deerfield.
"Our girls have a lot to be proud of -- with three seniors on this roster, it's a very young team," said Grayslake North coach Adam DeCaluwe, whose team finished at 8-8-1. "We started slow this year and the weather didn't help. We struggled early on, but the last couple of games we started to play very well. Unfortunately, it was a little too late in a big game."
Knights midfielder Chelsea Olson typified the intense effort of her team as she tried to generate a tying goal when Grayslake North trailed 1-0 in the second half.
The equalizer never came, and Deerfield got a late insurance goal.
"It was really hard to lose but we worked hard the entire time," Olson said. "Especially at the end, we were putting our hearts on the field. That seemed more important.
"We needed to get forward and I was trying to get everyone to play with their feet. We wanted to get forward and not be so defensive-minded. We did see some more chances open up."
Deerfield (15-6-2) scored three minutes into the game as Emily Kellow found the back of the net off a cross from Margot Sylvan. Kellow scored a second goal in the final three minutes after getting a pass from Logan Just.
"(Deerfield) was a good team and came out with a lot of intensity," DeCaluwe said. "That put us on our heels for the first 40 minutes. We did much better in the second half."