Boys soccer: Grayslake Central makes history with narrow supersectional win
After another step in the postseason playoffs, Grayslake Central is going to a place they've never gone before -- the final four in Class 2A.
Grayslake Central got past visiting Notre Dame 1-0 in their own supersectional Tuesday night.
The Rams (14-6-2) will play Troy (Triad) at 1 p.m. Friday in the Class 2A state semifinals at Hoffman Estates High School. Triad defeated Urbana 1-0 in the Romeoville supersectional at Lewis University Tuesday night.
"It means it's history, being the first time Grayslake Central has ever gone to state," Grayslake Central coach Keith Andersson said. "Every game that these boys win is history. It's something that they will remember for the rest of their lives. These are the memories that you will make."
The Rams knew this game would be a battle against Notre Dame (23-2-2) and it showed throughout a scoreless first half and into the second half. It looked like the Rams had the better of the play and they kept the Dons out of dangerous scoring opportunities.
"We're coming in like were No. 3, we're the underdog," Andersson said. "You guys are the talent and you guys know what to do. Our guys, literally had a team meeting before the game, not sure what they said or did. But, they came out ready to play and it was amazing."
Grayslake Central's Daniel Marynevych scored his 20th goal of the season on a header in the 69th minute, which was on a thrown-in by Lucas Veenstra and then a Mitchell Fein head flick. It was the eventual game-winning goal which occurred with 11:11 left on the clock and the sixth goal in five postseason games for Marynevych.
Maybe, it was a wish come true for the Rams.
"We've been practicing that play all year," Marynevych said. "We just did it again. Honestly, on every throw-in this game, I had this feeling. Sometimes, it didn't work out but we were able to get that one. I'm just glad to help my team and be there for them. Just able to carry the team to the top. At the beginning of the season, I wouldn't see this happening (going to state)."
Notre Dame had its best scoring chance off a service in the middle of the box in the 61st minute. Ryan Shanahan had an attempted header stopped by Rams keeper Uriel Garcia Perez (7 saves), making a late adjustment and moving back to the goal line.
"I thought that ball was coming nowhere near me, but on the last second header I had to react with the save," Garcia Perez said. "It looked like the ball was slowing down. I didn't want to come too far off my line. I saw the opponent head the ball and made the save. I think that was what changed the game right there."
Garcia Perez didn't know what to believe along with the rest of the Rams when the final whistle blew. They did know they've got a trip all set up for Hoffman Estates this weekend and a chance to go after the state championship in Class 2A.
"I'm so excited right now and I can't even explain it," Garcia Perez said. "Never thought this would happen. It's history right here."