LANSDALE — Twenty minutes into the second half of a league matchup against Archbishop Wood, Lansdale Catholic girls soccer coach Tom O'Donnell felt the urge to push his players forward and go all-out offensively.
"I had to think back to Monday night, when pushed forward against Archbishop Ryan in a loss,' he said after the game. "I knew, with this team, we had to just keep at it.'
O'Donnell obviously knows his team well.
Trailing by a goal, LC scored 25 minutes into the second half to even the score, and the league rivals battled through two physical periods of scoreless overtime to end in a draw, 1-1. The match moved LC's record to 8-1-1 (5-1-1 PCL). It was the third tie of the season for Wood.
"I have to keep reminding myself that it was a tie, because the kids really battled and fought,' O'Donnell said. "The way we played today, our team's work-rate was phenomenal. We've got a bunch of gamers. I was really pleased.'
For all 100 minutes, the matchup was demanding on both sides, with players from each squad fighting for headers and loose balls.
Wood stuck just three minutes into the game, when junior Katie Neveil beat LC's keeper to a chip on the right side, took two dribbles, and fired it into the back of the net. On their heels, the Crusaders tried to work its way back into the game for the rest of the half, but couldn't crack Wood's aggressive, physical defense.
"They played hard and took away some good opportunities,' O'Donnell said.
LC stuck with its game plan and came out firing in the second half. The Crusaders dominated second-half possession, appearing to pick up confidence and speed as the period progressed. They flirted with a goal 20 minutes in, but caught the crossbar on a header and couldn't convert on the rebound. But just a few minutes later, sophomore sub Jules LaSanta gained control of a deflected pass, made a quick move in the box, and blasted the ball top-right above Wood keeper Deanna Messner.
"We have some young kids on this team who have a lot of skill, a lot of talent, and a lot of athleticism,' O'Donnell said. "Jules subbed in and showed that. She's really one of our goal scorers.'
The teams went back and forth with possession for the remainder of the half, and continued that trend throughout overtime. Wood had three strong scoring chances in overtime, but couldn't convert, ending the match in a 1-1 draw.
LC plays on the road at Christopher Dock Mennonite on Saturday.
Archbishop Wood 1, Lansdale Catholic 1
Archbishop Wood 1 0 0 0 — 1
Lansdale Catholic 0 1 0 0 — 1
First Half Scoring: AW: Katie Neveil, 3:25.Second Half Scoring: LC: Jules LaSanta, 70:15.Assists: Amanda McDermott (AW); Sarah Opdyke (LC).Shots: Archbishop Wood: 7; Lansdale Catholic 11Saves: Deanna Messner (AW) 5; Erin Brokans (LC) 6.Corners: Archbishop Wood: 6, Lansdale Catholic 8.