The second-seeded Blair girls soccer team played a Bear down for the majority of Tuesday's home match, but it still took down Elkhorn North and advanced the Eastern Midlands Conference (EMC) title game.
The 4-2 winners play top-seeded Norris for the crown tonight.
“It's pretty exciting,” sophomore Keara Chaffee said Tuesday. “And I think we're going to be ready to go on that day because we've been looking forward to it.”
BHS defender Sally Kies elaborated.
“I'm ready,” she said. “For most of us its been a goal set from the beginning of the season when we had our first team meeting.”
To reach the final against the Titans, Blair took a 2-0 lead early against the Wolves. North scored an own goal off of Chaffee's crossing pass first, then surrendered a second to the midfielder, who finished with her left foot.
The Wolves responded with their own goal and seemingly grabbed all momentum when Bears forward Sami Murray picked up a red card during the final minutes of the first half. The referee's call meant BHS would have to win while playing 10-on-11.
“I think we all had step up our game and fill Sami's spot because she's a really good player up top,” Chaffee said.
The Bears managed.
They controlled possession early on during the second half and went ahead 3-1 when Payton Sullivan passed a Chaffee cross on to Allison Hernandez, who finished the play with a shot to the left of the North keeper.
The Wolves pulled within one goal again, but Sullivan notched an immediate answer giving Blair a two-goal advantage it'd hold until the end.
Bears goalkeeper Sydney Campbell and the defense held up despite playing shorthanded.
“I feel like it takes more of us, more communication,” said Kies, who plays alongside Madeline Dirkschneider and Trinity Back in the back line. “But we worked good together to bring it all in and get the job done.”
Now, coach Brandon Palmer's team hopes to do it one more time for an EMC Tournament championship.