Centennial midfielder Lauren Ahles (10), left, celebrated her penalty kick goal to win the game against Rosemount in overtime. Joining her were teammates Brooklyn Bordson (15), center, and McKenna Monson (13). Photo: LEILA NAVIDI • leila.navidi@startribun
Centennial soccer coach Ginger Flohaug set her penalty shot lineup seven deep and drilled them at Friday’s practice.
They went 7-for-7.
On Monday the first two shooters, senior Madison Monson and sophomore Lauren Ahles, each converted. Their clutch goals held off Rosemount in a 2-1 overtime victory.
Each player used positive reinforcement to ward off nerves.
“I can do it, I can do it,” Monson repeated in her head before scoring the game’s first goal in the 59th minute.
No. 3 seed Rosemount (17-3-1) responded with Lexi Orlando’s left-footed steal and goal less than one minute later. The teams remained tied through regulation despite strong chances for both.
After a scoreless first 10-minute overtime session, No. 2 seed Centennial (18-2) got a break. Ahles said her foot got stepped on in the box, causing her to fall.
Ahles, who has verbally committed to Northeastern, went out alone on Saturday for additional practice. She made her thoughts audible, telling herself, “One, two, three, kick.”
Sophomore Lauren Ahles scored in overtime as Centennial escaped Rosemount 2-1 in Monday’s second Class 2A girls’ soccer state tournament semifinal.
Ahles drew a penalty kick in the second half of overtime and buried the chance to send the Cougars to their first title game since winning the 2016 championship.
Centennial will play Maple Grove in a rematch of a 2-1 Cougars’ victory on Sept. 3.
Check back later for more on the game.