BELLEVUE – Talk about dramatic finishes.
After seeing her team’s 1-0 lead vanish less than four minutes earlier, Bellevue senior Clarice Bruch blasted home the game-winner from 20 yards out with just seconds remaining to give Bellevue a 2-1 win over Auburn Mountainview Saturday night and put the Wolverines into Friday’s 3A state semifinals.
“Everybody loves the game-winning shot, except maybe the coach, because I’ve been pulling my hair out the last five minutes,” said Bellevue coach Scott Smith. “I think I’ve got a couple extra gray hairs now.”
With less than four minutes left in the match, Auburn Mountainview (17-4) negated a 1-0 lead Bellevue (16-3) had held since the 55th minute when, on its fourth corner kick in a five-minute span, senior Sophia Wagner punched home the tying score from close range.
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In the closing minute, freshman Jojo Harber lifted a cross from the deep corner that reached the opposite side of the field. The ball found its way to Bruch, who hit a pinpoint shot to the upper far corner of the frame. It flew in over the outstretched hand of leaping Mountainview goalkeeper Rachel Fieser.
“It was a great shot at a great moment,” said Mountainview coach Cary Davidson. “You always hope that goes your way, but there’s no way our keeper is going to get a ball that high.”
With wind blowing at her back and no defenders pressuring her, Bruch made the kick she wanted.
“I knew I could do it,” she said, “and I’m glad that it happened.”
Bellevue, in its first girls soccer state tournament, scored in the 55th minute when Isabelle Butterfield slid home a goal from 18 yards out on an assist from Sabrina Mohazzabfar.
Liberty 3, Bishop Blanch. 0
Sami Harrell scored twice to lead the Patriots into the 3A state semifinals with a win over eighth-ranked Bishop Blanchet (14-5-3), the Metro League tournament champion. Liberty (13-4-4), which finished the regular season second in KingCo 3A/2A, advanced to face Seattle Prep in the semifinals on Friday.
Issaquah 2, Skyline 1 (6-5 PKs)
In a rematch of last year’s state final and this year’s KingCo 4A tournament final, Issaquah finally got the better of No. 1-ranked Skyline. After two-time defending champion Skyline (14-1-2) took an early lead, the Eagles (13-4-2) equalized in the second half and won in penalties after two scoreless overtime periods.
Issaquah advances to face Olympia in the state semifinals on Saturday. Skyline beat Issaquah 1-0 in last year’s final, and 4-0 in the KingCo championship this year.