On They Go!
Boys Soccer Warriors slip by Lincoln-Sudbury, 1-0, on penalty kicks.
The No. 13 Brookline boys soccer team delivered the knock out punch on No. 5 host Lincoln-Sudbury with a thrilling 1-0 win on penalty kicks in the Division 1 North quarterfinals yesterday. Brookline (13-2-6) will play No. 17 Somerville (12-5-4) in the semifinals Friday at Arlington High.
"So much relief," Brookline goalie Matt Hillman said, after he outlasted L-S keeper Eric Steinbrook, 2-1, in the penalty kick round. "The past two years we've lost in this round. Just a relief."
After 40 minutes of regulation and two exhausting overtime frames, it was obvious both Warrior squads had given everything they had. Neither team had allowed the other a goal.
"It was a defensive battle mostly," Brookline head coach Jeff Katz said. "We are a much more tackle-oriented team, and they are tough as nails."
"It's probably the most entertaining high school game I've been involved with," L-S head coach David Hosford said. "Teams giving it their all. Kids cramping up all over the place. This was their third game in four days and our second game in three days with double overtime. Both groups just fought as hard as they could."
Playing into the penalty kick round hasn't always been kind to either team.
Last year, L-S was stung by Lexington in the Division 1 North final, while Brookline fell to Framingham in PKs in the quarterfinals.
"It's our second year in a row going down on PKs," Hosford said. "It's easy to say it's the perfect way to end the game when you lose, but it's a tough pill to swallow."
L-S star senior Cole DeNormandie added, "They had two humungous kids in the back and they ran a five-man midfield, so I pretty much ended up being on top going four on one. It was kind of hard getting everyone else involved. It was tough getting it going offensively."
The Warriors knew they needed to contain DeNormandie.
"We always had a guy on him," Katz said.
Brookline's Eric Buck and Jacob Rosenkalt converted on Brookline's first two boots in the penalty kick round. And Hillman staved off enough L-S chances to secure the win. Hillman made eight stops on the night, while Steinbrook had 10.
"I thought that game could have gone on forever until they all dropped from exhaustion," Katz said "They were exhausted, we were exhausted."
DeNormandie summed up, "We had the experience. We had done it before. We had done it [in this round] last season. I just think that Brookline was a great team. They played well today. Hats off to them."