Girls soccer: Agates advance to second round of playoffs
Two Harbors senior Sami Szendrey scored two goals and recorded an assist to lift the Agates to their first playoff victory since 2015 — a 3-0 win over Hibbing-Chisholm in the first round of the Section 7A playoffs Thursday, Oct. 11, in Esko.
Szendrey got the scoring going when she and sophomore Morgan Beardsley broke free into the Bluejacket zone late in the first half, with Szendrey making the pass through two defenders for Beardsley to score the games opening goal.
"I could see I wasn't going to get ahead of them, but I could hear Morgan screaming behind me," Szendrey said. "I tried to get a low one through the defenders and then all I could hear was Morgan screaming."
In the second half, Szendrey and Beardsley both had multiple chances as the Agate attack really started to break down the Hibbing-Chisholm defense with crisp passes and an organized attack. Szendrey scored her first goal on a penalty kick with about 11 minutes to play in the game after Beardsley was fouled in the Bluejacket penalty zone.
Szendrey also scored about 2 minutes later when she popped one over the goalie's head. The play was a little reminiscent of Szendrey's first playoff game three years ago — on the same field in Esko.
In 2015, Szendrey had two goals, including one lofted over the goalies head in a 2-0 win over the Eskomos. Two Harbors was forced to play Hibbing-Chisholm at Esko's sports complex because heavy rains have made Halsted Field unplayable.
Coach Tom Szendrey said while his offense was crisp and played well, it was the defense that stood up to the Hibbing-Chisholm attack in the early stages of the game.
"The defense really kept it up through the whole game," Szendrey said. "By the end of the first half, I felt like our defense was just frustrating them and in the second half we kind of took over because our defense was really organized. Then our attackers started putting on so much pressure that Hibbing really couldn't get the ball back.
Two Harbors (11-3-2) will play at Duluth Marshall at 2 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 13, in Duluth. The Hilltoppers ran over Princeton 7-1 to reach the Section 7A quarterfinals.
Two Harbors 1-2—3
First half — 1. TH, Morgan Beardsley (Sami Szendrey), 36th.
Second half — 2. TH, Szendrey, 69th (PK); 3. TH, Szendrey (Grace Swanson), 71.
Saves — Kya Rybacheck, HC, 13; Tricia Osbakken, TH, 5.