Girls soccer: A dream come true for Benet

  • Benet Academy celebrate a penalty kick goal by Dani Pullen in the second half against Troy Triad in Class 2A state girls soccer semifinals at North Central College in Naperville on Friday.

      Benet Academy celebrate a penalty kick goal by Dani Pullen in the second half against Troy Triad in Class 2A state girls soccer semifinals at North Central College in Naperville on Friday. Bev Horne | Staff Photographer

  • Benet Academy celebrates their 3-0 win over Troy Triad in Class 2A state girls soccer semifinals at North Central College in Naperville on Friday.

      Benet Academy celebrates their 3-0 win over Troy Triad in Class 2A state girls soccer semifinals at North Central College in Naperville on Friday. Bev Horne | Staff Photographer

  • Benet Academy celebrates their 3-0 win over Troy Triad in Class 2A state girls soccer semifinals at North Central College in Naperville on Friday.

      Benet Academy celebrates their 3-0 win over Troy Triad in Class 2A state girls soccer semifinals at North Central College in Naperville on Friday. Bev Horne | Staff Photographer

  • Benet's Brooke Pullen, right, heads the ball in action against Troy Triad in Class 2A state girls soccer semifinals at North Central College in Naperville on Friday.

      Benet's Brooke Pullen, right, heads the ball in action against Troy Triad in Class 2A state girls soccer semifinals at North Central College in Naperville on Friday. Bev Horne | Staff Photographer

  • Benet's Mary Kate Wilhelm, right, in action against Sydney Thomas of Troy Triad in Class 2A state girls soccer semifinals at North Central College in Naperville on Friday.

      Benet's Mary Kate Wilhelm, right, in action against Sydney Thomas of Troy Triad in Class 2A state girls soccer semifinals at North Central College in Naperville on Friday. Bev Horne | Staff Photographer

  • Benet's Abby Casmere, right, goes up for the header with Eryn Fanning of Troy Triad in Class 2A state girls soccer semifinals at North Central College in Naperville on Friday.

      Benet's Abby Casmere, right, goes up for the header with Eryn Fanning of Troy Triad in Class 2A state girls soccer semifinals at North Central College in Naperville on Friday. Bev Horne | Staff Photographer

  • Benet's Kayla Brannigan, left, celebrates the goal of Mia Tommasone, left, in the first half against Troy Triad in Class 2A state girls soccer semifinals at North Central College in Naperville on Friday.

      Benet's Kayla Brannigan, left, celebrates the goal of Mia Tommasone, left, in the first half against Troy Triad in Class 2A state girls soccer semifinals at North Central College in Naperville on Friday. Bev Horne | Staff Photographer

  • Fans cheer on Benet Academy during their win overTroy Triad in Class 2A state girls soccer semifinals at North Central College in Naperville on Friday.

      Fans cheer on Benet Academy during their win overTroy Triad in Class 2A state girls soccer semifinals at North Central College in Naperville on Friday. Bev Horne | Staff Photographer

  • Benet's Jaimee Cibulka, right, takes control of the ball from Emily Rosenthal of Troy Triad in Class 2A state girls soccer semifinals at North Central College in Naperville on Friday.

      Benet's Jaimee Cibulka, right, takes control of the ball from Emily Rosenthal of Troy Triad in Class 2A state girls soccer semifinals at North Central College in Naperville on Friday. Bev Horne | Staff Photographer

  • Benet's Mary Kate Hansen, right, kicks the ball from Jordyn Besserman of Troy Triad in Class 2A state girls soccer semifinals at North Central College in Naperville on Friday.

      Benet's Mary Kate Hansen, right, kicks the ball from Jordyn Besserman of Troy Triad in Class 2A state girls soccer semifinals at North Central College in Naperville on Friday. Bev Horne | Staff Photographer

 
By Chris Walker
Daily Herald Correspondent
Updated 5/31/2019 8:14 PM

Mary Kate Hansen and Mary Kate Wilhelm have a lot in common other than sharing the same name, being seniors and playing defense for Benet.

They've also shared the dream of playing in a state title game.

by signing up you agree to our terms of service
                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

That became a reality during Friday's Class 2A semifinal against Triad when the Redwings defeated the Knights 3-1 at North Central College in downtown Naperville.

With the victory the Redwings (23-3-1) advanced to Saturday's state championship game, where they will take on Wauconda (19-2-1).

"Mary Kate Wilhelm and I were talking before the game about how we used to come to these when we were growing up and we've played together since we were 7 (years old)," Hansen said. "So it's pretty special to be playing together in a state championship."

Hansen even acknowledged that she was confident that she could someday make her dream a reality.

"If you told 8-year-old me that I was playing in a state championship -- and I was pretty confident -- I probably would've believed you," she said. "But I mean it's just been a lifetime goal to get here and we've got one more tomorrow and I couldn't be more excited."

Benet struck first, finally getting on the scoreboard with just 55.6 seconds remaining in the first half.

With Abby Casmere garnering a lot of attention, the Redwings got the ball to someone else when Mae Tully found sophomore forward Mia Tommasone, who buried her 8-yard shot.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

Triad (19-4-2) evened things up, though, taking advantage of a loose ball with 31:52 left to play as Avery Bohnenestiehl secured possession of the free kick and fired a 22-yard missile.

"We hate getting scored on," Hansen said. "One of our goals is to keep a shutout every game and when the one goal goes in we know we're not giving up a second goal."

They didn't, but they still needed another one of their own to pull ahead. They got it when Casmere appeared to be taken down by a Triad player but the official signaled a hand ball.

Kate Flynn then converted the penalty kick for a 2-1 lead with only 11:01 remaining in the game.

"Abby earned the PK that I finished and that was fabulous," Flynn said. "She's been really great at holding the ball up there for us and when she earned the PK and they told me to take it, you got to do what you got to do."

Flynn then connected with Casmere on a corner kick with just under six minutes to go, as Casmere volleyed her left-footed shot inside the opposite post to seal the victory.

"That was a great volley by Mia," Flynn said. "Normally Mary Kate Wilhlelm is our target on those because she's one of our best players in the air. I just try to put it right at the top of the sixth, which is where it was and Mia was there and the volley was fantastic."

0 Comments
                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 
Article Comments ()
Guidelines: Keep it civil and on topic; no profanity, vulgarity, slurs or personal attacks. People who harass others or joke about tragedies will be blocked. If a comment violates these standards or our terms of service, click the X in the upper right corner of the comment box. To find our more, read our FAQ.