Bennett from the Bleachers: Stateswomen win Districts in penalty kicks

Bennett Durando
Sports Columnist

BENNETT FROM THE BLEACHERSWho says soccer can’t be a game of inches too?

Definitely not the Webster Stateswomen, who stunned Ursuline in penalty kicks to win the District championship on Tuesday night.

Despite being out-shot (on goal) 13-2 through regulation and two overtime periods, the Stateswomen were still standing when the dust cleared, tied 1-1 and bound for a shootout that would determine their fate.

Junior goal-keeper Megan McClure boots the ball toward midfield after making a save during Webster's 1-0 win over Ladue on May 10.
Junior goal-keeper Megan McClure boots the ball toward midfield after making a save during Webster’s 1-0 win over Ladue on May 10.

After falling behind early in PKs, junior Megan McClure’s diving save helped Webster tie it back up after the second round. Both teams connected on their third and fourth shots, sending it to the fifth and final round in a 3-3 tie.

The win assured a continued tenure for head coach Chris Allen, who had led the Stateswomen to a 22-3-1 record and the number seven large school area ranking in his final season.

Ursuline, the number six team, had won seven straight coming into the District title game, and had only lost twice all season.

Before Ursuline’s third loss came in penalty kicks, it almost came in regulation after freshman Emma Atherton’s goal with 23:20 left put Webster up 1-0. However, the resilient Bears tied it on a Basler goal with 5:27 to play, ultimately forcing overtime.

Webster had all hands on deck at the defensive end in overtime, with McClure making a flurry of saves on a corner kick after junior Ava Burke made a game-saving goal line clearance.

Next for Webster is a Sectional showdown with Visitation, who defeated Westminster 2-0 to win the District 4 championship last night. Webster lost at Viz 1-0 two weeks ago. The rematch will be next Tuesday, May 24.

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