Karlee Stortz sends Lockport to tie with Providence

SHARE Karlee Stortz sends Lockport to tie with Providence

After opening the season with two scoreless ties, Lockport fell behind 1-0 on Monday against Providence and was desperate to get into the scoring column for the season.

Leave it to a freshman who was a last-minute addition to the varsity roster.

Karlee Stortz scored with 36:40 left in the match and the host Porters salvaged a 1-1 tie.

“Taylor Stortz ripped some scar tissue and we weren’t sure how long she was going to be able to go,” Lockport coach Todd Elkei said. “So we brought Karlee up just in case. Then another freshman was struggling, so we gave Karlee an opportunity and she took advantage.”

Katie Czerwinski scored for Providence (3-2-1).

Both goals were aided by howling, swirling winds that wreaked havoc throughout the match.

“The wind kind of took us out of our game,” Providence coach Dan Potempa said. “We’re a team that can possess really well, but the wind kind of threw us for a loop.”

Karlee Stortz’s first high school goal was certainly a memorable one. Racing down the sideline with Providence defenders crowding the box, she lobbed the ball high into the air from 30 yards out.

Suddenly, it was deflecting off the inside of the far post and in to get the Porters (0-0-3) on the board.

“I just turned around and let it go,” she said. “It was one of the most amazing shots I’ve taken. I didn’t think it would go in. I turned around and saw Courtney [Hackett’s] face and she was shocked and so excited for that goal.”

For Elkei, the goal brought a sigh of relief.

“Saturday [in a 0-0 tie with Lincoln-Way Central], I looked at [assistant coach Chris Beal] and said ‘Are we ever going to score?’ Elkei said. “Who’s going to step up? Of course it was a freshman.”

Providence struck first on a corner kick in the 22nd minute. Czerwisnki took the corner and sent what was intended to be a cross, but the wind helped the ball bend inside the far post and in.

The Celtics spent most of the first half on the attack, but could not add to the lead.

“We were hoping to score more in the first half,” Potempa said. “We put a lot of pressure on. I think we tried to do too much. It was like ‘We have the wind, we need to score a lot.’”

Providence’s Nicki Griffith and Lockport’s Cassidy Henson each made three saves.

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