One game away from state for Vikings
Wednesday, June 04, 2014 5:42 PM
Stef Bjerke, pictured here in last week’s first-round game, scored the winning goal Tuesday in double overtime. Below, Lauren Bruneau had the game-winning assist. (Photos by Jennifer Bissell)
For the second straight year, the Decorah girls soccer team (6-11) is one game away from the Class 2A state meet.
This time, it was Independence (12-7) the Vikings had to push past in the second round, winning 2-1 in double overtime Tuesday night in the regional semfinal.
Standing in Decorah’s way is Waverly-Shell Rock (17-2). The Go-Hawks dismantled South Tama/East Marshall 10-0 in their regional semifinal.
The regional final is Monday, June 9, at 6 p.m. in Waverly.
What happened Tuesday
It all came down to one shot in double overtime Tuesday night in Independence for the Vikings to get the win.
The game started strong, with Lindsay Smith scoring the first goal of the game off an assist by Anja Arend at the 6:54 mark. However, the Mustangs answered just eight minutes later.
It was a stalemate throughout the end of the first and the entire second half.
That forced the game into overtime, where neither team scored during the first extra frame. However, five minutes into the second, that changed. Lauren Bruneau found Stef Bjerke for the shot at 5:26, giving the Vikes the win and avenging a 2-0 loss earlier in the season.
Decorah had five shots in overtime and 22 in regulation.
Goalie Olivia Rauk made 13 saves in regulation and three in overtime.
Looking for state
Decorah will have a tough task to face Monday night. The Go-Hawks are ranked No. 1 in the state and boast a 17-2 record. Decorah lost to Waverly twice this season, 9-0 early and 6-0 May 23.
Last year Decorah advanced to the regional final before falling to Pleasant Valley 5-1.
The girls state tournament runs June 12-14 at Cownie Stadium in Des Moines.