After nearly 100 minutes of watching St. Michael claw its way back into Sunday’s Division II quarterfinal matchup, Ben Franklin senior Olivia Dejoue did the only thing he could to prevent the Warriors from making another comeback — not give them enough time to do so.
With less than a minute to play in extra time, Dejoue buried a wide open shot from about 10 yards out to send the defending state champs to a 4-3 upset win and a trip to the semifinals.
“We just persevered through,” Dejoue said. “We knew what it would take because we’re reigning champs from last year, and we’re here to do it again.”
Before Sunday, No. 2 St. Michael ( 21-5-5) had not allowed a Division II team to score more than one goal in any match this season, recording 21 shutouts in the process.
But No. 7 Ben Franklin (18-4-3) ended that streak in the first half as a pair of penalty kicks quickly put the Falcons in the lead.
Senior Donte Oliver easily buried the first goal in the second minute after St. Michael defender and captain Alex Silva slid cleats up into the box.
Silva was called for a foul again in the 30th minute, setting up Ben Franklin’s Miles McGuire for the penalty kick to make it 2-1.
“We saw them play Teurlings, and we knew they were going to be physical,” Ben Franklin coach Jose Ferrand said. “We told our kids we had to play as strong as they did and play through that physicality.
“And we dealt with it. We dealt with that adversity.”
St. Michael outshot Ben Franklin 20-12 by keeping possession in its attacking third of the field for most of the game, but the Flacons were largely more efficient on offense, converting on a third of the shots taken.
Ben Franklin only took four shots during extra time, but along with Dejoue’s game-winner, Oliver recorded his second score of the day on a low shot to the near post in the second minute of the extra period.
St. Michael coach Paul Fletcher said there was nothing he would do differently, saying he thought the Warriors had better chances all game long.
Senior Mitchell Williams was a major factor in the Warriors’ ability to stay in the game as he came away from his final appearance in a St. Michael uniform with a pair of goals, including a free kick in overtime that tied the game 3-3.
Williams’ free kick, combined with the heading goal he scored off an Ashton Fletcher corner in the 14th minute, put him at 99 goals for his high school career, 45 of which came this season.
“I’m just in shock,” Williams said. “We played as hard as we possibly could. … When we got the goal to go into extra time, I thought we were going to win it. They got one late, and it didn’t fall for us.”
Ben Franklin moves on to play the winner of No. 3 Bolton and No. 11 Morgan City in the semifinals. That game is slated to be played on Monday at Morgan City.