Sterling, VA (May 28, 2019) - The Freedom Eagles had something to prove upon entering the stadium at Potomac Falls High School. Their opponent, the Panthers, had narrowly beaten them in the Potomac District tournament final just a few days ago. Although Freedom won their only regular season meeting, that tournament loss was like a fresh wound.
Freedom's Emily Maier scored almost immediately to demonstrate that the Eagles were ready to play. But Potomac Falls' Mason Whitmore scored the first of her two goals just two minutes later to tie it up at 1-1. After that, Freedom would pour it on with four straight goals to stake a commanding lead midway through the first half. Trailing 5-1, the Panthers were forced to call a timeout.
That pause helped a bit as Whitmore would score next, but Freedom would not let the lead go below three goals, and at halftime the margin was 9-6. In fact, Potomac Falls' Julia Riley's goal with just two seconds remaining before the break looked like a potential backbreaker.
As the second half opened, the Panthers' Abigail Detorie scored to close the gap to two, but Freedom scored three in a row to open up the largest lead of the game at 12-7. With about fifteen minutes left in the game, it looked like Freedom had things well in hand.
But that's when Potomac Falls showed their championship mettle. Slowly, gradually, methodically they began to come back. Their patient offense scored, once, twice, three times and then, almost miraculously, they had tallied six straight goals--including three from Claire Harris--to take the lead for the first time, 13-12, with six minutes remaining.
With two minutes left, Maier found the back of the net to tie the game and send it to overtime. The first three-minute, sudden-death period went scoreless, but with a minute remaining in the second overtime the Eagles' Allison Ohri scored on a penalty to give Freedom the title.
Both teams advance to the state tournament.
Final Score: Freedom 14 - Potomac Falls 13