N  I A  G  A  R  A      G  A Z  E  T  T  E - October 26, 2008

HS SOCCER: Grand Island girls record thrilling win

By Nate Beutel

GRAND ISLAND — Winning games by three, four, five or even six goals is easy, but coming back from a 3-0 second-half deficit is something totally different.

But that’s exactly what the second-seeded Grand Island Vikings did to No. 7 Iroquois in a Section VI Class A girls soccer quarterfinal Saturday afternoon. Jordan Dudish put home her second goal of the game with just over 5 minutes left to cap the comeback and send GI into the semifinals.

“I knew we could come back, but I wasn’t quite sure if the timing or conditions would allow us to,” GI coach Dave Bowman said afterward. “But going forward this win is going to be much more worthwhile than a blowout. I think they proved to each other out there that they can do almost anything if they work hard and constantly play with a sense of urgency.”

That urgency was needed as the visiting Chiefs scored the game’s first three goals. Striker Danielle Braun put Iroquois up 1-0 midway through the first half before putting home two more tallies just after halftime to give the Chiefs a big 3-0 lead.

“That was tough for us, but we tried to stay positive and composed out there,” Dudish said.

GI (14-3-3 overall) would begin to chip away at the lead about 11 minutes into the second half when leading scorer Jenna Raepple found the back of the net. Then less than 7 minutes later, Dudish put in her first goal of the game, to be followed 9 minutes later by the equalizer from Lexi Amato.

The Vikings, who had 29 shots on goal for the game, continued to pepper the net with balls until Dudish placed one perfectly in the upper-right corner of the net with 5:39 left.

“I think I caught her off guard a little with my shot,” Dudish said. “It was real exciting for me and the whole team.”

The Vikings defense, which had its problems stopping Braun all day long, was able to contain the Chiefs for the final few minutes and clinch the biggest comeback in Bowman’s tenure as head coach.

GI will host No. 3 Amherst at 3:30 p.m. Wednesday in the semifinals.