Fargo North shuts out St. Mary's at state girls soccer
JAMESTOWN, N.D. - First-half goals have come at a premium for teams at the North Dakota state girls soccer tournament this weekend, and when they've happened, it's foreshadowed victory every time.
JAMESTOWN, N.D. – First-half goals have come at a premium for teams at the North Dakota state girls soccer tournament this weekend, and when they’ve happened, it’s foreshadowed victory every time.
Fargo North crossed that off its semifinal checklist immediately on Friday at Rotary Field.
Carly Bosch scored in the second minute, and Molly Sarafolean added a pair of late goals as the Spartans topped Bismarck St. Mary’s 3-0 to earn a spot in today’s championship match.
Before fans were even settled in their seats, Bosch and her teammates erupted with excitment after slipping one by St. Mary’s goalkeeper Lindsey Schweitzer.
“It was a lot of motivation for us,” said Sarafolean, who assisted on the opening goal. “We definitely got pumped after that. Our chemistry got better after it, and the pressure was taken off. That goal in the first few minutes really helped us.”
The Spartans are gunning for their first title since 2006 and third overall. They play at 3:30 p.m.
“We’re gonna stick to the same game plan,” Fargo North coach Michelle Crary said. “Stay focused and don’t give up.”
Sarafolean, an all-state striker, was the catalyst against the Saints, finding Bosch for the first score. She outran the defense on both of her insurance goals that came in the final two minutes of the match.
“She’s a great soccer player,” Crary said. “She works hard, and she enjoys the game. She’s a very special player.”
Fargo North’s defense has been essential in its run to the state championship game, as it has yet to allow a goal. The Spartans were third-seeded out of the East Region, but beat West Region No. 2 seed Minot in the opening round on Thursday.
“We’ve had a good journey starting from the beginning of the season,” Crary said. “We had some small steps to take to learn some basic things. The credit goes to the girls. They’ve worked hard all season, and they’ve worked hard all the way through this one. They deserve this.”
Said Sarafolean: “We always knew we were capable of this. We knew this was the goal from day one. It’s amazing to have that become a reality.”
FIRST HALF: 1, FN, Bosch (Sarafolean) 2:00.
SECOND HALF: 2, FN, Sarafolean (Watson) 79:00. 3, FN, Sarafolean 80:00.
SAVES: SM, Schweitzer 4. FN, Goroski 2.
Bismarck 1, West Fargo 0 (OT)
Madison Burgard was half-expecting her Bismarck Demons to play West Fargo even during overtime and double overtime.
Burgard made sure it didn’t come to that, securing a trip to the state soccer championship match with a goal in overtime for a 1-0 win Friday at Rotary Field.
“Since almost every game (at state) has been a shootout, that’s kind of what we thought,” she said. “Yeah, just crazy.”
The Demons meet Fargo North for the title at 3:30 p.m. today, and they’re looking for their first title since 2005. They can join Bismarck Century and Fargo South as the only programs with three state titles.
“Every girl came here and fought their hardest and did everything they could,” said Burgard, a junior. “Everyone put in everything they had.”
The two teams engaged in a physical affair, with West Fargo getting multiple opportunities including Alison Enno’s shot that bounced off the crossbar with a minute to go in regulation.
“It’s unlucky we hit the crossbar,” West Fargo coach James Moe said. “We had our opportunities. I thought we were the better team the majority of the game. All it takes is one, and they got it.”
In the 86th minute, Bismarck threw in the ball on the left side near West Fargo’s bench. Burgard took a pass and dodged traffic, finding the slimmest of openings.
West Fargo goalkeeper Danielle Haekenkamp came out to challenge, but Burgard unloaded to the far side of the net out of everybody’s reach.
“I got it at my feet and kept running around girls,” said a very excited Burgard. “I saw the opening between them and just shot it.”
It was a rare miss for West Fargo’s defense. Haekenkamp finished with just one save.
“She stuck with the ball, ran her heart out and put it on frame,” Moe said. “We didn’t cover the angles very well. Unfortunately, we gave up the one goal on the one or two chances they had. It was a well-deserved victory for Bismarck. They stayed in the game the whole time.”
FIRST HALF: No scoring.
SECOND HALF: No scoring.
OVERTIME: 1, B, Burgard 86:00.
SAVES: B, Sayler 5. WF, Haekenkamp 1.
Fargo Davies 3, Minot 1
Held scoreless on Thursday, Fargo Davies junior Jennifer Marsh broke out in a big way.
She scored a hat trick for goal 26, 27 and 28 on the season in leading Davies to today’s fifth-place match. Davies was upset by Bismarck St. Mary’s in the quarterfinals.
Minot’s Taryn Love tied the score at one early in the second half, before Marsh added two more.
Minot keeper Kaitlyn Stenberg had four saves, while Davies’ Emery Gess had three stops, all in the first half.
FIRST HALF: 1, FD, Marsh 11:00.
SECOND HALF: 2, M, Love (Lewis) 42:00. 3, FD 50:00. 4, FD, Marsh 59:00.
SAVES: M, Stenberg 4. FD, Gess 3.
Fargo Shanley-Oak Grove 1, Bismarck Century 1 (S-OG wins shootout 4-2)
Brooklyn Dew converted the final kick in a shootout, as Fargo Shanley-Oak Grove kept its fifth-place hopes alive with a shootout victory over West Region champion Bismarck Century. The Deacons won the shootout 4-2.
Anna Triller had a goal early in the second half and also during the shootout. S-OG keeper Megan Miranda had three saves.
Century keeper Amanda Leintz finished with two saves. The Patriots’ lone goal came from Kylee Welch.
FIRST HALF: No scoring.
SECOND HALF: 1, SOG, Triller 42:00. 2, BC, Welch 56:00.
OVERTIME: No scoring.
SHOOTOUT GOALS: SOG, Triller, Bokinskie, Bath, Dew. BC, Schumacher, Welch.
SAVES: SOG, Miranda 3. BC, Leintz 2.
Aarhus writes for The Jamestown Sun