Girls Soccer: Ellie Ackermann’s goal in third OT lifts Barrington past Cary-GroveCary-Grove's Allison Budreck (left) and Barrington's Megan Fox go up for a header during their regional championship girls soccer game at Lake Zurich. | Michael Schmidt~Sun-Times Media
After three Barrington shots rattled off the goal post Friday night, the Fillies were finally able to celebrate a Lake Zurich regional championship when Ellie Ackermann netted the game’s lone goal three minutes into the third overtime.
Ackermann left no doubt, smashing the ball deep into the back of the net after teammates Aimee Pierce and Jenna Szczesny carried the ball through the Cary-Grove defense.
When the ball trickled passed Trojans goalie Paige Lincicum, Ackermann was perfectly positioned for the dramatic golden goal.
“It feels really great,” Ackermann said after celebrating the 1-0 win with teammates. “I know our team is pumped. We worked together really hard to push through it. We knew it would finally go in if we just kept the pressure up.”
The Fillies dominated the action the entire second half and 23 minutes of overtime. Barrington outshot Cary Grove 15-2 during that span and earned a 9-0 advantage on corner kicks.
It appeared Barrington would get on the board late in the first half when forward Molly Pfeiffer headed a corner kick off the right goal post. Several Barrington players threw their arms into the air, as it appeared the shot was on net.
Fillies reserve Kathryn Avedon dented the Cary Grove crossbar in the second half with a drive from the top of the box. Another Fillies header struck iron in the first overtime.
Trojans goalie Lincicum was sharp all night, denying dozens of Barrington attacks to keep Cary-Grove’s hopes alive.
“Paige, their goalie, was amazing,” Ackermann said. “She made a lot of quality saves. I know we got a little frustrated but we stayed with it and scored.”
Fillies coach Ryan Stengren also admitted feeling nervous late in the game after the ball seemed to dance just around the Cary-Grove net all night.
“I thought it could have been one of those days where we are knocking on the door a bunch of times and it’s not happening,” Stengren said. “The last thing I wanted was to go to (penalty kicks). I kept telling the girls it takes one play and the game is over.”
Heading into the third overtime period, Stengren repeatedly called on his forwards to follow rebounds to the weak side to find the winner.
“I was so proud of Ellie for that,” he said. “I told them that the second runner needs to go right to the goalie because how many times did you see in the game today the ball popping around? We finally got to that second ball.”
The victory sends Barrington in the Rockford Boylan sectional semifinals. The Fillies will play Tuesday against the host school, a 3-1 winner over Hononegah.