The Saugus High girls soccer team earned another thrilling win, this time with a penalty shootout with Downey to earn a spot in the CIF Southern Section Division II Championship today, with the state playoffs in their sights, as well.
The Centurions beat Downey in penalty kicks, 4-3, after playing to a 2-2 draw and a scoreless overtime.
The game was quiet for the first 65 minutes, until Downey scored first to take a 1-0 lead, which Saugus was able to answer about four minutes later, when a kick from Nya Baccelli bounced off a Downey defender and into the goal.
Downey quickly answered back, leaving Saugus down 2-1 into the last few minutes.
At that point, Saugus defender Natalie Quezada intercepted a pass, dribbled past a few Downey players passed to Jazmine Flores, who got the ball to Alyssa Edwards. Edwards set up a cross for MacKenzie Jones, who scored to put the game into extra time.
While both Rebecca Lim and Avery Wilson split crucial time in goal for the Centurions all season, head coach Kevin Miner said he allowed the two to decide who would mind the net for the penalty kicks, and Lim was chosen to make the stops that kept the team’s season alive.
The team now faces La Mirada at Saugus’ field at 3 p.m. today. By qualifying for the semifinals last week, the team also has an automatic berth in the state playoffs, which will be announced next week.