Naperville Central doesn't have a panic mode.
Even when the Redhawks are down, they tend to keep their composure and play their game.
They found themselves down 1-0 after one half during Tuesday's Class 3A Metea Valley sectional semifinal but responded with a pair of headers from Ben Border to beat Neuqua Valley 2-1.
With the victory the Redhawks advanced to Saturday's sectional title game against Waubonsie Valley.
"Being down 1-0 is never a good spot, but I think the players have a lot of confidence in their ability and I don't think they ever panicked," Redhawks coach Troy Adams said. "They did a nice job of staying composed and looked for quality shots, which was nice to see."
Naperville Central (16-2-2) drew even with 23:47 left in the second half as the set piece via corner kick from Jay Tegge to Ben Border proved lethal.
"The way our corners are set up we have five different runs and one of my jobs is to get to the near post," Border said. "Coach is always telling me to do my job and get to the post early. I saw it forming and just threw my body on it, and I was fortunate on both of them."
Border's game-winner came with 14:31 left, compliments again of Tegge's corner kick.
"In the first half I tried to get a little deeper and it didn't work too well," Tegge said. "You can't waste those opportunities, and in the second half I tired to keep them lower but still dangerous. Luckily, Ben was able to read both of them very well and have an excellent finish."
Neuqua Valley never really challenged in pursuit of the equalizer. In fact the Wildcats were more tied up with defending to keep themselves within striking distance. They were able to shut down the Redhawks the rest of the way but never mounted much a scoring threat during the second half.
"I think we're just disappointed because we didn't match their intensity in the second half," Wildcats coach Skip Begley said. "I thought we played really well in the first half, but we didn't respond in the second half. We couldn't seem to get them off of us, we couldn't find the ball and the ball couldn't find our feet."
Ryan Ross pounced on a loose ball with 21:58 left in the first half to give the Wildcats a 1-0 lead, which they'd carry into the break.