Zoe Bailey's heart raced as she prepared to take a penalty kick in double overtime in the opening match of the girls state soccer tournament Thursday at Anchorage Football Stadium.
Good thing she has a teammate like Haleigh Van Allen.
"I told Zoe, 'I believe in you,' " Van Allen said. "I knew she'd bring us home on that one."
Bailey did just that. She deposited a shot past Dimond keeper Katelyn Sweeney to lift Service to a 2-1 win.
The win advances Service to a Friday semifinal match against Soldotna, a 3-0 winner over Lathrop. The other semifinal pits South, which thumped Thunder Mountain 9-0, against Kenai, a 2-0 victor over Wasilla.
Van Allen essentially assisted on the match-winning goal when she was tripped in the box while rushing toward Dimond's net as she took on four Lynx. That foul set up the penalty kick.
Bailey took her time as she mulled over her shot selection in the sudden-death extra period.
"I was thinking, 'Don't look at the keeper. Get it on frame,' " she said.
The first-round victory not only moved the Cougars into the semifinals, it helped ease the pain from a loss to Dimond in last year's state title match, Van Allen said.
"That was the redemption game from last season," she said.
Dimond and Service were locked at 1-1 after a back-and-forth first half that featured plenty of scoring chances for each team.
"That's the way it's gonna be between those two teams," Dimond coach Cari Gill said. "Both teams fought very hard."
Kelsey Eagle gave Dimond the early lead when she powered a shot over the head of Service keeper Brianna Linnell midway through the first half.
Van Allen evened the score with an impressive bicycle kick in the waning minutes of the first half. The difficult shot surprised her.
"I didn't think it would go in," Van Allen said. "You don't see that very often in high school."
Both teams had scoring chances in the final 10 minutes of regulation, perhaps the best coming when a shot from Van Allen clipped the top of the crossbar.
The tie after regulation forced overtime, consisting of two 10-minute halves. Then came two five-minute halves of sudden death. Had a goal not been scored then, penalty kicks would have decided the match.
South 9, Thunder Mountain 0
Kayla Sims delivered the game-winning goal eight minutes into the match and South added eight more goals in a 9-0 rout of Thunder Mountain.
Abigail Osgood and Jessica Fuller scored two goals apiece for the Wolverines. Both of Osgood's strikes came in the first half to carry South to a 5-0 lead. Sophie Gross and Claire Lovering also scored in the first half.
Fuller's two goals came in a four-goal second half that also included goals from Morgan Lash and Savannah Green.
Sims and Megan Currier each handed out two assists and Osgood had one.
Soldotna 3, Lathrop 0
Kylee Wolfe and Olivia Conradi struck for goals in a two-minute span early in the match to power Soldotna past Lathrop 3-0.
Wolfe's goal came five minutes into the match. Conradi scored two minutes later.
The Stars, who outshot Lathrop 15-7, salted the win with Skylar Shay's second-half goal.
Kenai 2, Wasilla 0
Cori Holmes and Hannah Drury provided the goals in Kenai's 2-0 win over Wasilla.
Holmes scored on a penalty kick late in the first half to give the Kardinals a 1-0 edge at the break. Hannah Drury supplied insurance with a second-half goal.
Reach Mike Nesper at firstname.lastname@example.org or 257-4335.
By MIKE NESPER