Mount Carmel is headed back to the state championship match for a second straight year.
Giselle Aguilera scored the lone goal and No. 3 Mount Carmel defeated No. 10 Barbe 1-0 on Friday in the Division I semifinals at Pan-Am Stadium.
“That was the goal from the beginning,” MCA coach Pavlos Petrou of returning to the state championship game. “We worked hard to get there. Now we have to go finish.”
Mount Carmel will play No. 1 Byrd at 5 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 27 at Tad Gormley stadium.
The Cubs (20-1-7), who lost in the final last season to St. Scholastica, are going for their first state title since 2012.
Aguilera’s goal came in the 20th minute and was all the Cubs needs as they recorded their third consecutive playoff shutout.
Mount Carmel also beat East Ascension and Northshore 1-0 in the two previous rounds.
Aguilera also scored a goal and had an assist in those two games.
“I thought we played great,” Petrou said. “It was a little skaky at first and we were not in a rhythm. Once we got in a rhythm, we controlled the match although we missed some opportunities.”
Mount Carmel has allowed just one goal in the past 13 games.
“Hopefully we can keep it going,” Petrou said.
Byrd 2, St. scholastica 2 (BYRD WINS 6-5 on PENALTY KICKS): For the first time since 2008, St. Scholastica won’t be playing in the state championship match.
No. 4 seed St. Scholastica lost 6-5 on PKs on the road to top-seed Byrd.
SSA was going for its third consecutive state championship.