Thursday’s IAAM B Conference soccer semifinal between second-seeded Roland Park Country and third-seeded Severn School was a soccer fan’s dream, but only one team would go to sleep happy and it was the host Reds who prevailed, 2-1.
The victory sends RPCS to the school’s first ever soccer final, on Saturday (5:00 p.m.) at Anne Arundel Community College. In the championship game, Roland Park will face top-seeded and defending champion Bryn Mawr, which outlasted Friends School, 1-0, in double overtime to return to the title game.
RPCS, with the aid of their home fans, started off the game fast and furious, putting a lot of pressure on the Severn goal and their keeper Allie Schuh (8 saves). Roland Park was even able to win a first half penalty kick. Reds Senior co-captain Gabby Weintraub stepped up to the spot where she had not missed all season. Schuh the Admirals senior keeper, however, was up to the task, diving strong to her right and deflecting the ball out of danger. The game continued to go back and forth for the rest of the first half with both teams having scoring opportunities, but it ended 0-0.
Severn eventually struck first with Abby Ritter taking advantage of a great thru ball from Beth Willertz, who made a midfield run, slotting the ball past RPCS keeper Betsy Angel.
With 22 minutes left Weintraub made up for her missed PK, by taking a free kick cross from senior Betsy Hebert, and finishing near post, past the diving Schuh. RPCS keeper Angel countered with the save of the game, moving from left to right to snare a Severn shot out of mid air.
With just under four minutes of time in regulation, Roland Park senior Daniela Eppler received a cross, brought it down with her chest and volleyed the ball into the upper corner of Severn’s goal, sending RPCS to the championship.
Bryn Mawr and Friends played at Goucher College because of Thursday’s rain and offense was hard to find for both teams. In the second overtime, Moran Rubin netted the golden goal to book a second straight championship appearance for the Mawrtians.