A perennial mainstay in the Division I quarterfinals, Tuesday would have marked the fifth consecutive season the St. Joseph’s Academy soccer team played its way out of the second round of the playoffs.
Apparently no one told Northshore.
The No. 10 Panthers beat the No. 7 Redstickers 3-0 in their home town on Tuesday night, ending the program’s quarterfinals-appearance streak at four seasons.
“At this point in the playoffs it’s not really an upset for us,” Northshore coach Nathan Beasley said. “We played them earlier in the year and tied them 2-2. The main difference between this game and the last is that we finished our opportunities and they didn’t. I’m very proud of this young team.”
The game was neck and neck for the first 40 minutes, with neither team putting the ball in the goal in the first half.
The draw wouldn’t last much longer than that, though.
In the 45th minute, Northshore sophomore SJ Mull slipped past the Redstickers defense for a breakaway run to the goal when she pulled up to fire a low driven ball to the near post. The St. Joseph's keeper was able to get a hand on the shot, but it deflected off her arms and into the net.
From there, Northshore (12-4-5) was in control of the game, outshooting St. Joseph’s 5-3 for the remainder of the night, including two more goals.
The Redstickers (12-6-3), on the other hand, never found their footing again as Northshore never allowed them a clean shot on frame.
“Just couldn’t seem to get a shot on goal,” St. Joseph’s coach Stephanie Broussard said. “I don’t know exactly what our problem was tonight. We prepared and it just wasn’t our night.”
Northshore’s Mikayla Price was the second goal scorer when she put a head on textbook corner kick to the near post in the 57th minute.
But it was once again Mull who would put the finishing touches on the evening with a 30-yard free kick that snuck just under the crossbar in the 67th minute.
“They played us very tough in the first half,” Mull said. “During halftime we knew we had to come out strong to beat them. They’re a very good team defensively, offensively, all around, so we knew we had to put together something special.”
Northshore moves on to play No. 2 Mt. Carmel in the next round. Mt. Carmel won its game on Tuesday by a score of 4-0 over No. 18 Alexandria.