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Girls soccer: South Division rivals meet for Class AA title

Bethlehem advances past Niskayuna on penalty kicks to meet Guilderland

Guilderland’s Jessica Capone, right, battles Shaker’s Jean Mary Chakmakas, left, for the ball during Saturday’s Section II Class AA semifinal game at Schuylerville High School.

Guilderland’s Jessica Capone, right, battles Shaker’s Jean Mary Chakmakas, left, for the ball during Saturday’s Section II Class AA semifinal game at Schuylerville High School. Robert Goo

— Bethlehem thought it had won the penalty kick round when Nickles stopped Jenny Cascino's attempt, but the referee ruled Nickles had stepped off the goal line before Cascino's shot reached her. Cascino was granted another shot, and she delivered with a goal to tie the penalty kick round at 4-4 and force a sudden victory round.

"That's a really tough thing. You take your shot, you miss and you hear the announcer say, 'Bethlehem has won the game and advances to the Sectional finals,'" said Colby. "Then it gets called back, and you have to line up the shot again. To Jenny's credit, she did a great job of composing herself. She decided where she was going to shoot it, and she made it."

Sam Taillon put Bethlehem ahead 5-4 on her penalty kick, and Nickles made a diving stop on Parzych's attempt to send the Lady Eagles back to the Sectional final.

"That was an incredibly unique situation," said Rogan. "The ability to refocus on what they needed to do (following Cascino's penalty kick) was incredible."

Earlier in the day, Guilderland played Shaker (9-9-0) in a game dominated by defense. Both teams had trouble getting shots on goal as scoring chance after scoring chance was wiped away by aggressive defensive play.

The Lady Dutch got their break late in the second half. Angela Luizzi took a hard shot that went off Shaker goaltender Gabby Cotugno's hands and into the net to give Guilderland the goal it needed to advance.

"We felt it was only a matter of time (before we scored)," said Snyder.

Guilderland goaltender Jenna Cubello made two saves to pick up the shutout.

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