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Girls' soccer: Parchinski uses her head to get Liberty into 5A playoffs
The SAT kept Cate Parchinski out of the starting lineup Saturday but not off the scoreboard.
The Liberty junior netted the game’s only goal and put the Lancers into the playoffs with a 1-0 victory over Doherty at District 20 Stadium.
“It’s really exciting,” said Parchinski, who arrived just minutes before the game because of the college entrance exam. “This is our first time making the 5A playoffs. I’m super stoked.”
A year ago the Lancers (7-6, 5-2 5A Metro) won just two games. This year they have an outside shot at finishing second in the conference. The win over the Spartans guaranteed the Lancers, in their second season at 5A, a finish no worse than tied for third.
After the win, Goyden told the team they were going to the postseason, a big surprise to many, one player even asking Goyden if he was sure.
“Our goal was to make the playoffs,” Goyden said. “Yeah, it was borderline.”
The goal that put them into their first 5A playoffs came on their third corner kick in a span of 3 minutes.
Jen Milbank put the first two corner kicks slightly high, but Parchinski, who subbed in at the 7-minute mark after warming up, got enough to put them on net. Both times Doherty goalie Olivia Mills punched the ball over the goal.
Just before Milbank’s third attempt, Goyden yelled to play the ball lower. Milbank did, and Parchinski headed it into the net in the 31st minute.
“I’m really glad she got on it,” Milbank said. “Everyone knows it’s going to her.”
Milbank, a senior who was part of last year’s two-win team, almost didn’t come back this season.
“It’s hard to come back even after that,” Milbank said. “I was more confident about this year, and it worked out.”
Liberty’s defense held Doherty (3-10, 1-6) to three shots. Lancers goalie Courtney Smith was equal to the task.
“My girls played well,” Spartans coach Jon Shub said. “They played hard, they played smart. We just couldn’t find the back of the net today.”