FORT WAYNE – Madeline Pollifrone had wanted to do it – score with some long, arcing shots that would make the crowd go wild.
Especially since shes a senior and her career is winding down at Bishop Dwenger.
And Wednesday was Senior Night, her team had a two-goal lead, and she thought, What the heck?
So Pollifrone blasted the ball from about 90 feet out, on the right side of the pitch, and it found the back of the net – the highlight of a 3-0 victory over Snider at Hefner Field.
I just saw the space, saw the open shot, Pollifrone said. I had been trying to take one all season and I thought, Hey, its Senior Night. Its the night to do it. I kicked it and knew it was going in. It was special to say the least.
The Saints possessed the ball for the majority of the game, a staple of coach Jeff Killions teachings.
Our team as really adapted to that style, and Im proud of the girls for stepping up, Pollifrone said.
And the victory gave the Saints the inside track to the SAC title; they are 10-2 overall, 6-0 in the conference. The Panthers are 9-2-1 overall, 4-1 in the SAC.
We played well, in the first half especially, though we didnt control the last 10 minutes of the first half, Killion said.
And we didnt play as well in the second half, but Im really happy with the first 30 or 40 minutes of the game.
As he should have been; the Saints had their three-goal lead by the 39th minute, when Pollifrone stunned the crowd.
It was a very good shot, a very good chip by Madeline, Killion said. We tell her to take it when she gets it like that, and she took a very good shot. Im happy for her because shes a senior.
Before that, though, there had been a measure of controversy.
The Panthers argued that Haley Stephensons goal in the 34th minute shouldnt have counted because of an illegal substitution.
Less than two minutes after that, Kellee OShaughnessys crossing pass set up Katie Potosky for a 2-0 lead, and from there the Saints were able to relax a bit and prepare for tonights game with Carroll.
Which isnt to say the Panthers were a team the Saints took lightly.
Theyre always a great opponent, and they always come out ready to play, Pollifrone said.
For us, its been a long season of trying to get together. Working together equals progress, but tonight working together equaled success. Thats what we tried to make happen.