Division 3 girls soccer: Parker’s third goal sinks Hampshire in 2OT, sends Mahar to WMass finals

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  • Mahar soccer players Sienna Moore, from left, Grace Ricj, Natalie Belloli, Siobhan Davis and Natalie Apteker celebrate Ricj's goal against Hampshire Regional during the Western Massachusetts Division 3 semifinal, Tuesday, Nov. 12, 2019 at Holyoke High School. —STAFF PHOTO/JERREY ROBERTS

  • Mahar soccer players Grace Ricj, center left, and Natalie Belloli, center right, celebrate Ricj's goal against Hampshire Regional during the Western Massachusetts Division 3 semifinal, Tuesday, Nov. 12, 2019 at Holyoke High School. —STAFF PHOTO/JERREY ROBERTS

  • Mahar soccer players Siobhan Davis, from left, Delaney Parker, Astha Bernard and Carra Fitzgerald walk off the field after their team's 4-3 double overtime win against Hampshire Regional during the Western Massachusetts Division 3 semifinal, Tuesday, Nov. 12, 2019 at Holyoke High School. —STAFF PHOTO/JERREY ROBERTS

  • Hampshire Regional players Parker Pallante, from left, Kayla Lukasiewicz and Jocelyn Salomao celebrate Lukasiewicz's goal against Mahar during the Western Massachusetts Division 3 semifinal, Tuesday, Nov. 12, 2019 at Holyoke High School. —STAFF PHOTO/JERREY ROBERTS

  • Delaney Parker, right, of Mahar, celebrates the second of her three goals against Hampshire Regional with Carra Fitzgerald, left, during the Western Massachusetts Division 3 semifinal, Tuesday, Nov. 12, 2019 at Holyoke High School. —STAFF PHOTO/JERREY ROBERTS

  • Brianne Salomao, right, of Hampshire Regional, goes to a pass against Sienna Moore, of Mahar, during the Western Massachusetts Division 3 semifinal, Tuesday, Nov. 12, 2019 at Holyoke High School. —STAFF PHOTO/JERREY ROBERTS

  • Kendrah Doane, left, of Mahar, passes against Katelynn Dunn, of Hampshire Regional, during the Western Massachusetts Division 3 semifinal, Tuesday, Nov. 12, 2019 at Holyoke High School. —STAFF PHOTO/JERREY ROBERTS

  • Natalie Belloli, right, of Mahar, uses a chest bump to get control of a pass beside Maggie Rubeck, of Hampshire Regional, during the Western Massachusetts Division 3 semifinal, Tuesday, Nov. 12, 2019 at Holyoke High School. —STAFF PHOTO/JERREY ROBERTS

  • Hampshire Regional players Maggie Rubeck, left, and Maddie Pond celebrate Pond's goal against Mahar during the Western Massachusetts Division 3 semifinal, Tuesday, Nov. 12, 2019 at Holyoke High School. —STAFF PHOTO/JERREY ROBERTS

  • Hampshire Regional players Brianne Salomao, from left, Katelynn Dunn, Maggie Rubeck and Riley Shaughnessy celebrate Rubeck's goal against Mahar during the Western Massachusetts Division 3 semifinal, Tuesday, Nov. 12, 2019 at Holyoke High School. STAFF PHOTO/JERREY ROBERTS

  • Maddei Pond, right, of Hampshire, heads the ball against Carra Fitzgerald, of Mahar, Tuesday. STAFF PHOTO/JERREY ROBERTS

  • Kayla Lukasiewicz, center, of Hampshire Regional, moves the ball between Mahar defenders Micalyn Mailloux, left, and Natalie Belloli during the Western Massachusetts Division 3 semifinal, Tuesday at Holyoke High School. STAFF PHOTO/JERREY ROBERTS

  • Carra Fitzgerald, right, of Mahar, moves the ball against Riley Shaughnessy, left, of Hampshire Regional, during the Western Massachusetts Division 3 semifinal, Tuesday, Nov. 12, 2019 at Holyoke High School. Siobhan Davis looks on. —STAFF PHOTO/JERREY ROBERTS

  • Brynn Adams, left, of Mahar, and Brianne Salomao, of Hampshire Regional, eye an incoming pass during the Western Massachusetts Division 3 semifinal, Tuesday, Nov. 12, 2019 at Holyoke High School. —STAFF PHOTO/JERREY ROBERTS

  • Olivia Strojny, left, of Hampshire Regional, moves the ball against Emilia Carfagna, of Mahar, during the Western Massachusetts Division 3 semifinal, Tuesday at Holyoke. STAFF PHOTO/JERREY ROBERTS

  • Natalie Belloli, left, of Mahar, and Brianne Salomao, of Hampshire Regional, go to the ball during the Western Massachusetts Division 3 semifinal, Tuesday, Nov. 12, 2019 at Holyoke High School. —STAFF PHOTO/JERREY ROBERTS

  • Hampshire players Riley Shaughnessy, from left, Maddie Pond and Maggie Rubeck walk off the field after their double overtime loss to Mahar, Tuesday. STAFF PHOTO/JERREY ROBERTS

Staff Writer
Published: 11/12/2019 11:39:27 PM

HOLYOKE — The buildup wasn’t complex. It came down to speed and control.

It was early in the second half of the second overtime in the Western Massachusetts Division 3 Girls Soccer Tournament semifinals between second-seeded Hampshire Regional and No. 3 Mahar Regional. With the score tied, a ball was sent down the middle of the field for Senators forward Delaney Parker.

As the ball rolled, it deflected off a Raiders’ center back and onto Parkers’ foot. One on one with Hampshire goalkeeper Katie Taylor, Parker calmly tucked the ball inside the right post for her third goal in a 4-3 double-overtime victory that sent the Raiders home and propelled the Senators to the sectional finals.

“(Mahar) has a great player that got in behind us,” Hampshire coach Stephen Croft said. “That was the difference in the game.”

Kayla Lukasiewicz, Maddie Pond and Maggie Rubeck each scored once for the Raiders. Juliana Dickinson had an assist. Taylor made six saves.

Grace Rich also scored for Mahar. Carra Fitzgerald had two assists. Maddie Lloyd made 11 saves.

Play in the first half was defined by near misses.

With 29 minutes to go in the first half, the ball rolled into the top of the Raiders’ penalty box. A Hampshire defender stepped up to clear the ball with a kick, but missed. Parker poked the ball away and sent a shot into the top-right corner from close range to put the Senators ahead 1-0.

Following the goal, Hampshire’s Jocelyn Salomao hit the post twice in a span of five minutes. With 23 minutes to go in the first half, she sent in a low shot past Lloyd from the left side. As the ball rolled slowly toward the goal line, Salomao put a hand up and prepared to celebrate, but the ball lightly bounced off the post and out.

Four minutes later, she sent in another shot, this time from 25 yards out. The ball went over Lloyd’s head, but bounced off the crossbar and out.

With 17 minutes left in the half, the Raiders got the equalizer they were looking for. Lukasiewicz handled the ball on the left side and looped a ball over Lloyd’s head and inside the right post to tie the game.

The Raiders controlled the ball and applied pressure for a four-minute span after Lukasiewicz’s goal and earned two corner kicks. Once Mahar cleared the second corner, Fitzgerald sent a long ball down field and found the foot of Parker. She split two Hampshire center backs and scored with a low shot to put the Senators ahead, 2-1, with 13:50 to go in the half.

“There’s a reason why Mahar has had the season that they’ve had,” Croft said. “(Parker) is a really good player.”

The Raiders responded by dominating possession for the next eight minutes of play. Hampshire’s forwards and midfield kept the ball in the Senators’ end with crisp passing and timely interceptions.

With six minutes to go in the half, a hard shot from Hampshire bounced off of Lloyd’s hands and back into play. Pond ran in and kicked the ball in to tie the game.

Hampshire wasn’t prepared for what happened next.

On the ensuing kickoff, Fitzgerald nudged the ball over to Rich. Roughly 50 yards away from the goal, with the wind at her back, she sent a hard looping shot over Taylor to give the Senators the 3-2 lead.

“It’s a back-breaker to get a goal like that scored right after we tied it up,” Croft said. “What I’ve been telling this team is that you have to play in any condition, be mentally tough and be ready to respond; which they have done all year.”

The Raiders responded to the goal by controlling the ball for the majority of the second half of regulation. Hampshire kept the pressure on Mahar’s defense and had two prime scoring opportunities early in the half, but didn’t convert. With 28 minutes to go in regulation, Rubeck sent in a corner kick that curled toward Mahar’s goal. Lloyd stepped out to punch the ball out, but it took an awkward bounce and landed in the back of the net to tie the game, 3-3.

“I thought we played well in the second half,” Croft said. “I told them to possess the ball better and switch the point of attack from one end to the other. There was a lot of space on the opposite end of the field if (Mahar) condensed to one side. The wind was a big factor too. In the second half we had the wind at our backs. That made a difference in terms of clearing the ball and attacking.”

Hampshire continued to control play in the first half of the first overtime. Parker played at the top of the Senators’ formation and was a target for long balls from midfield for most of the game. The Raiders’ center backs tightened up and kept her at bay for the half.

Then came her dazzling run and goal in the second half of the second overtime to earn Mahar the win.

The sectional semifinal was Hampshire’s first since 2014.

“It’s a great group,” Croft said about this year’s team. “A great senior class that unfortunately played their last game today. This team has been a lot of fun to be around. It’s tough that it had to end the way it did. Just a phenomenal group. They worked hard, came to practice every day and gave everything they had. Games like this happen, but you can’t let that take away anything we did this year.”


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