In a showdown of power teams, the match ended without a clear line of resolution.
It spoke volumes about two teams capable of matching up with anybody.
“This was a measuring game for us that told us where we stand right now, what our strengths are and what we need to work on,” Naperville North coach Steve Goletz said. “Both teams really battled out there, in terrible conditions.”
Top-ranked Naperville North drew first blood though No. 8 Waubonsie Valley showed their own mettle by answering late in the second half as the teams fought to a 1-1 draw Friday night at Metea Valley.
The planned second game involving No. 4 Neuqua Valley and No. 10 Naperville Central was moved to Naperville Central tomorrow at 5 p.m. Waubonsie Valley clipped Naperville Central 2-1 on Wednesday.
The result ended two separate streaks, the Huskies’ five-game winning streak since they opened the season with a 1-1 tie with Hinsdale Central. The game also snapped the Warriors’ six-game winning streak since their 2-0 loss to Lyons to start the year.
The defending Class 3A state champion Huskies (5-0-2) played without star forwared Zoe Swift and survived the fatique of playing their third game in three days. Star sophomore forward Abbie Boswell, the team’s most dangerous weapon in Swift’s absence, recorded her 10th goal of the season in the 34th minute.
“[Waubonsie Valley star senior defender] Jenna Romano was marking me, and I just made a move, a tick-tock [counter reverse] move and I got a touch on the ball and I was able to get it into the side corner,” Boswell said.
The score marked the sixth consecutive game Boswell has recorded at least one goal in a game. The goal effectively negated the Warriors’ early advantage in possession time.
“We’re pleased with how we played and how we fought out there, but it’s a little disappointing to have it end like that,” she said.
Naperville North had chances to extend it lead when Emily Bromagen hit the post on a shot early in the second half and Christa Szalach was just wide on another ball.
Waubonsie Valley (6-1-1) struck in the 75th minute during a frenetic sequence of events. Naperville North sophomore keeper Fiona Baenziger made a spectacular diving stop on a 37-yard free kick blast by the Warriors’ senior forward Rachele Armand.
On the ensuing corner kick, Armand served the ball to sophomore Morgan Kemerling. Her header just eluded the reach of Baenziger. It was the first goal of her varsity career.
“We ended up pulling it out,” Kemerling said.
Neither team mounted a serious scoring threat in the final five minutes. The ending was bittersweet though not punishing. Both teams enter next week’s Naperville Invite enthused about their chances. Goletz said Swift is expected back.
“We just need to get our All-American and see how good we can be,” he said.