Lake Park, Rolling Meadows cruise to Bartlett sectional semi wins

SHARE Lake Park, Rolling Meadows cruise to Bartlett sectional semi wins

After finishing fourth in Class 3A last fall, Lake Park has been on a mission to get back to the state tournament.

The Lancers continued their season-long roll with a 2-0 win over Glenbard West at the Class 3A Bartlett Sectional semifinals Tuesday.

Senior Oliver Horgan scored both of the goals for the Lancers.

Second-seeded Lake Park will face fifth-seeded Rolling Meadows, a 3-0 winner over West Chicago Tuesday, in Saturday’s 11:30 a.m. sectional title game at Millennium Field in Streamwood.

“If you want to play another day, you have to go out there and play hard, and that’s the amazing thing, they’re playing hard and they’re playing aggressive,” Lake Park coach Anthony Passi said. “I don’t think anybody would have thought we’d be where we’re at right now. They got a little taste of it last year. They get hungry and they keep getting after it.”

After a scoreless first half, Lake Park (19-1-4) took advantage of a handball from No. 13 seed Glenbard West (9-11-1) for the first goal. With 37 minutes left, Horgan placed it in the low left corner, the spot he typically aims, for a 1-0 lead.

“We just needed something to go right,” Horgan said. “We got it and our offense started clicking and we started playing our game.”

Less than 10 minutes later, Horgan was at it again with a brilliant move to sneak past the goalie and punch in the second goal with 27:22 left.

“Anthony (Passi) played a great ball,” Horgan said. “We were talking about making a diagonal run, and he played a great ball. I saw the goalie come out so I just took a touch around him and I was able to finish it. It was a great ball by him.”

In the opener, Rolling Meadows (12-7-2) broke open a scoreless game at the half with three goals in the final 17:49 to end the season for West Chicago (10-10-2).

The Mustangs had a goal wiped off on an offside call in the final minute of the first half, which was the start of their offensive push. They finally broke through with 17:49 left when Jose Cruz scored. Cruz struck again with 11:05 left on a second chance off a corner kick.

David Zarate, who created many of Rolling Meadows’ offensive chances, scored the final goal with 8:07 left.

“I think we were a little bit fired up coming into the second half,” Rolling Meadows coach Peter Mikulak said. “We wanted to get that one back. I thought we were doing a pretty good job finding some space outside.”

Rolling Meadows will be looking for its first ever sectional crown Saturday.

“At this time of the year, everybody is good,” Mikulak said. “A lot of teams are starting to play their best soccer. I think that makes for a fun environment.”

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