Prep girls soccer: Madison outlasts Franklin in sectional marathon

MADISON TWP. — Kayla Flannery put the finishing touch on a thrilling Madison High School girls soccer victory Tuesday night.

The junior netted the game-winning goal in the second round of penalty kicks as the Mohawks edged visiting Franklin in a Division II Dayton sectional opener at Brandenburg Field.

It was 1-1 through regulation play and two overtime periods. Both teams netted two goals in the first round of PKs and then two goals in the second round. A Franklin miss was then followed by Flannery’s conversion.

Both schools are members of the Southwestern Buckeye League, but they didn’t meet during the regular season.

“We have been looking forward to this game since we got the matchup,” said Mohawks coach Hannah Murphy, whose squad improved to 8-8-1. “We’ve been trying to play Franklin for a couple years now. We were excited coming into this game and spent a lot of time at practice on fundamentals and finishing. I told my keeper and strikers that I thought this would go to PKs. So I made them practice, and I’m glad we did.”

Madison, seeded 11th, will travel to ninth-seeded Eaton on Saturday at 3 p.m. Franklin, the 12th seed, finished 4-11-2.

“The victory means a lot,” Mohawks junior goalkeeper Kenzi Saunders said. “We came out tonight ready to play. We knew this was going to be an even game and needed to play as a team.”

Added Madison senior captain Callie Bunnell, “This is me and Tara Price’s senior year and this is our first-ever tournament victory, so it’s a pretty big deal for us to go out on our senior year.”

Both teams came out with a lot of emotion in the scoreless first half and had their chances to take early advantages.

The Mohawks had good looks from both Hannah Pfeiffer and Acasia McGuire in the opening half. Pfeiffer hit the post early and McGuire was robbed of a goal by Brooke Kinzer when the Wildcats keeper was out of the net. Kinzer, who plays in the field, positioned her body and saved a well-struck shot from going in.

Franklin had a similar situation when Riane Todd was looking for her own goal when Flannery saved what would’ve been a goal with her foot.

Taylor Senters scored in the 44th minute to give the Wildcats a 1-0 lead. Madison, playing in front of a raucous home crowd, tied things up 10 minutes later when Pfeiffer netted a goal from inside the 18-yard box off a throw-in that was misplayed by Franklin defenders.

The Mohawks had an 18-11 advantage in shots in the physical match, which included 20 total fouls and four yellow cards (two for each team).

“I think the girls played a real hard-fought tournament game tonight. This is probably the best game they have played all season,” Wildcats coach Teresa McGrew said. “Our record really doesn’t show the talent they have. Today they put it all on the field and gave it their best effort.”

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