CHAZY — It was one of the most exciting girls’ soccer games of the season, and it ended in fitting, dramatic fashion — with penalty kicks.
After 110 minutes, Saranac was able to hold off rival Beekmantown sudden-death penalty kicks to remain undefeated and capture the Section VII Class B crown.
The sectional title is the Chiefs’ first since 1995.
Saranac’s Jamie Favreau started out the shootout strong, as she knocked away the Eagles’ first shot. The Chiefs held a 4-3 advantage after four rounds of penalty kicks. Beekmantown’s Lauren O’Connor gave the Eagles life as she knocked away Saranac’s fifth shot.
Kallie Villemaire then buried her shot to send the game into sudden-death kicks.
Kaitlyn Bowman was given the first opportunity for the Chiefs in sudden-death and got one past O’Connor. Favreau then came up big again, knocking away the Eagles’ attempt and clinching the victory.
“To win a game like that feels so good, because we beat such a good team,” Saranac coach Mary LoTemplio said. “Both teams showed so much effort and competitiveness.”
Ellen Thew put the Chiefs up early in the first half, as her first goal came just over a minute in. Thew cut off a pass from a Beekmantown defender and then beat two more defenders on her way to the goal. Her second goal came at 33:05, when she received a pass from Emily Heywood and had plenty of space to place the ball in the back right corner of Beekmantown’s net.
The Eagles came surging back before halftime.
At 27:52, Courtney Wilson played a ball in the box, which Kallie Villemaire was able to get a foot on. The ball deflected off a Saranac defender and past Favreau for Beekmantown’s first goal. With 10 minutes remaining in the first half, Gonyea put a beautiful cross through the Chiefs’ box that Wilson was able to finish to tie the game at 2-2.