Dundee-Crown won a school-record 17 games this season, but the Chargers met their match Tuesday night in the first round of the playoffs against Barrington and standout Kendall Stork.
The freshman phenom scored a pair of goals in a 2-0 win as the host Broncos advanced to meet undefeated Cary-Grove in the regional championship game on Friday. The Trojans were 2-0 winners against McHenry.
“Kendall has had some great games,” said Barrington coach Scott Steib. “But I don’t think anything, as electric as tonight. Maybe being a playoff game magnified his performance, but that was something else to watch.”
Stork was clearly the dominant player on the field. His first goal came just over 10 minutes into the contest on an assist from Logan Morris. He also had several on target crossing passes and scrambles in front of the net that didn’t materialize into goals before finally adding the clincher with 5:22 left in the game on a breakaway.
“We definitely came ready to play tonight,” said Stork, who has 14 goals this season. “We knew what we had to do. All that mattered was that we won and moved forward. Our midfielders did a great job of controlling the ball and keeping us on the attack. That created a lot of opportunities for us up front.”
The second-seeded Broncos (17-3-1) were able to overcome being a man down for nearly 33 minutes of the match after starting goalie Pat Deroche was red-carded with just over 13 minutes left in the first half.
“You are just always happy to win a playoff game,” said Steib. “But it’s even more special when you win by overcoming that kind of adversity. Our defense and midfielders have played great all season and they stepped it up again tonight when we really needed it.”
The third-seeded Chargers (17-4-2) had a tough time getting anything going offensively. They did have two scoring opportunities. However, a direct kick from just outside the box in the first half was deflected away and the rebound was stopped by Deroche.
Then midway through the second half Salvador Rodriguez just missed a goal for the Chargers when his 30-foot blast hit the crossbar. Moments later, Eduardo Arellano was ejected after his second yellow card to put both teams a player short. From that point on D-C did not have another shot on goal.
“It’s tough to lose the first game of the playoffs,” said Dundee-Crown coach Rey Vargas. “But it doesn’t take away from what we accomplished this season. They played their hearts out tonight. Barrington was just a little better. Most of our team is coming back again next year, so we have a lot to look forward to.”
It’s the fourth straight season Barrington will face Cary-Grove in the playoffs. They have lost to the Trojans the past two meetings.
“They have the (Kevin) Wilde kid and we have Kendall, who can both change the game around in a hurry,” said Steib. “ But I think that thing is going to be all sorted out at the midfield. It should be a great game.”