LYNN, Mass. -- Victoria Ortega’s 92nd minute goal in the second period of extra time sent the Dover-Sherborn Raiders to the division three state championship in dramatic fashion.
The Raiders (15-5-3) enjoyed the majority of the possession during the game and in extra time, but they were unable to make it count on the scoreboard. They didn't crack the scoreline until the second period of extra time, and have made late game heroics a habit this post season.
“We had to earn it the hard way,” explained Raiders head coach Dave Wainwright. “But this team likes to do things the hard way, I don’t know why, but we love our drama at Dover-Sherborn.”
The breakthrough came off a corner kick early in the second overtime. Raiders senior midfielder Nadine Cutler whipped in a corner, which sophomore Jackie Gouldreault cushioned down for Ortega to smash home.
“Nadine took the corner and she had a nice ball in, like we’ve been doing all game,” said Ortega about her match winner. “It came in, it was deflecting around and Jackie pushed it out to me and I had the shot with everything I had, I saw it go in and it was great.”
Gouldreault and Ortega owned the midfield for most of the match. Despite having less possession, the Royals (13-4-6) still had some quality scoring chances.
In the ninth minute, forward Kristin Hogan ripped off the Royals' first shot of the evening, but was denied by Raiders freshman keeper Megan Hall. D-S controlled the game's tempo with its five-man midfield, but were still unable to find the game's first goal.
Gouldreault had two good chances late in the first half, including a blistering shot in the 33rd minute that sailed inches over the crossbar. Hogan had the best scoring chance for either side with the final kick of the first half, but was again denied by Hall.
Hogan had another chance when the teams retook the field. Royals senior forward Nicoline Holland played in a lofted cross which Hogan took down brilliantly, but the shoot ripped just wide left of the net.
Georgetown junior goalkeeper Jamie Block made three of her five saves over a ten-minute span in the second half. In the 62nd minute, Gouldreault sent in a cross to Raider forward Taylor Coutts, who headed a shot on target, only to be denied by Block.
Block then made two spectacular diving saves denying Gouldreault and Coutts on separate occasions. Royals head coach Colleen Gibbs had high praise for her net minder after the defeat.
“She’s been solid all year long,” said Gibbs. “She’s a great keeper, she’s made some great saves tonight, she’s been playing hard all year and she’s come through for us a lot.”
After the teams finished regulation scoreless, Ortega scored the winner in sudden death overtime.
“We just take it game by game, we just play for our seniors,” said Ortega of her upperclassmen. “We love them and we do everything we could do, and we got it done.”