Lincoln-Way North took control against Lincoln-Way West in the second half Thursday, but it was the first quarter – which ended in a 3-3 tie – that Phoenix coach Kendra Will was most pleased with.
“We played a much better first quarter,” she said. “We were behind 3-0 after the first when we played them Friday (a Phoenix win). When we got off to a good start in the first half, we knew we could really take it up a notch in the second half. Sometimes it takes awhile for us to get it all flowing.”
The fifth-seeded Phoenix led 5-4 at halftime and pulled away after the break for an 11-6 win over the No. 4 seed Warriors in a Lincoln-Way Central Sectional quarterfinal.
Niki Beringer and Missy Wortel scored four goals each to lead North (15-15). Jessica Larson made 10 saves.
Gena Tanquilut paced West (13-13) with four goals.
“We just really wanted to advance,” Beringer said. “With a brand new team this year, we really wanted to make it to the semifinal. It was really important for our egos.”
North will meet top seed Lincoln-Way East in Friday’s semifinals.
Tanquilut gave the Phoenix fits early, doing all her scoring in the first half and showing off a strong outside shot.
North, though, locked down defensively in the second half.
“We were pressing a lot,” Wortel said. “We have a lot of good defensive players and we know defense is always strong for us.”
Beringer, Wortel and Cassidy DeGraff (3 goals) all scored in the third quarter as the Phoenix pushed the lead to 8-4.
West got within 8-6 with 5:27 to go after goals from Margaret Winslow and Bridget Soukup, but did not score the rest of the way.
Beringer made it 9-6 at the 2:53 mark and DeGraff delivered the dagger, scoring off a turnover with 2:04 to go.
Brenna Bowers made 15 saves for the Warriors.
Lincoln-Way East 17, Bradley 3
The Griffins (22-5) scored the first 13 goals of the game and cruised behind Aimee Schaaf (6 goals), Lauren VanderVelde (4 goals) and Jill Connolly (14 saves). Rachel Thorson, Abby Greene and Sam Ashline all scored once for Bradley (7-17).
Andrew 16, Marian Catholic 5
Second-seeded Andrew (22-5) rolled behind Megan Hofer (7 goals). Genny McCarthy and Caily Friel added three goals each. Mae VanBeest had four goals for Marian (11-14-1).
Lincoln-Way Central 10, Homewood-Flossmoor 3
The No. 3 seed Knights (16-13) outscored the Vikings (10-20) 5-1 in the third quarter to pull away. Liz Klock led a balanced attack for Central with four goals. Rebecca Tanner made 14 saves for H-F.