Gators end Pointers’ 36-game streak
Dietrich knees it in as upset hands Sparrows Point its first loss since 2014 season
The cross came in from the right side and there was traffic in front of and behind Perry Hall sophomore forward Kara Dietrich.
But she got to it first and used her knee to score the Gators’ biggest goal of the season, four minutes into overtime Friday for a 2-1 win against rival No. 7 Sparrows Point, which won its third straight Class 1A state championship and beat the Gators in last season’s Baltimore County championship game on penalty kicks.
Sophomore Phoebe Canoles, who scored No. 11 Perry Hall’s first goal, assisted on the game-winner. The Gators ended the Pointers’ 36-game winning streak, which dated to the 2014 season.
In control for much of the game and getting the opening goal from Canoles early in the second half, Perry Hall appeared to be on its way to victory in regulation. But Sparrows Point (4-1) sent more players forward late and it paid off when freshman Alayna Jerome scored on a cross from sophomore Julie Lynch with three minutes left in regulation.
The Gators (4-1) regrouped in overtime to win.
“It was crazy. I was just in the moment [and got my] knee on it,” Dietrich said. “Our whole team played great today. We pos- sessed the ball, worked it up the field great and it was just awesome. It was tough [to get scored on late]. It really hit us hard, but we knew we had to pull through.”
While Perry Hall returned many of its key players from last season, the Pointers graduated a stellar class of eight seniors. For much of the game, the Gators spent more time with the ball and created more scoring chances.
After a scoreless first half, Perry Hall started fast in the second, with senior Rachel Bohli sending a through ball to Canoles, who scored from 14 yards for a 1-0 lead.
The Gators defense, led by Madison D’Amico and Aya Neal, stayed organized until Sparrows Point’s late breakthrough. Lynch used some crafty footwork on the right side before sending a cross to the near post for a one-timer by Jerome.
With Perry Hall competing in Baltimore County’s North/ West division and the Pointers in the South/East, there’s a strong possibility the teams will meet again in a rematch of last year’s title game.
“I think they deserved to win — they were the better team for the majority of the game,” Sparrows Point coach Joe Lambert said. “I think for maybe 20 or 30 minutes we pushed the issue. With 10 minutes [left], I took a defender off and put another forward on and it definitely created a few chances for us and we got our goal, but for the majority of the game they were the better team.”