By Mike Deak
FORT WAYNE – A non-call on what looked to be goalie interference cleared the way for the clinching score of a 3-2 Homestead championship over Warsaw in the title tilt of the Class 3-A Homestead Girls Soccer Sectional.
In a tie game with just over eight minutes remaining on the clock, Homestead’s Sofia Cetrone slid for a ball in the Warsaw penalty box. In the chase for the ball, Warsaw keeper Kierstin Parker was run over by a second Homestead player and covered as the ball bounded off Parker’s hands. The ricochet found its way to Cetrone, who skidded a shot off the right post and into the goal for the go-ahead tally.
Warsaw’s call for goalie interference as well as offsides went for not, and in a mad scramble in the final 7:53, Warsaw couldn’t find the equalizer for a bitter out of the state tournament.
Warsaw (10-6-2) had a seeing-eye goal from Corissa Koontz, sending a free kick from well over 40 yards out sailing over everyone and just under the crossbar to cut what was a 2-0 Homestead lead in half. Rylee Burns would tie the score at two with nine minutes remaining when a through ball from Audrey Grimm was collected by Burns and tucked home to knot the game.
Homestead (16-2) opened the game with two goals in 14 minutes, put home by Emma Duby and Taylor Archbold.
“We came out a little flat in the first half and Homestead capitalized, but I’m proud of the grit we showed to get back into the game against a good team,” said Warsaw head coach Jon Hoover. “Corissa has a phenomenal goal that really set the tone for our second half. We really outplayed them in the second half and created a lot of chances. This group never gave up and clawed their way back into a game that other teams might have given up on. It was a very exciting game to watch and I’m proud of how these women responded to adversity.”
Homestead, which had already beaten Warsaw 6-0 and 5-0 earlier in the season, advances to the Logansport Regional to meet Noblesville next Saturday.