Four years ago, Scorpions Elite (MA) didn’t make it out of the group stage of the 2008 National Championships. Today, Scorpions clinched a spot in the Under-19 Girls National Championships final with a 3-2 win over Gallagher on the last day of group play.
Early in the game, Gallagher took advantage of Scorpions only having 10 players on the field after one had stepped off with an injury. In just the 5th minute of play, Abbey Stock beat a defender on the right side of the box and slipped a shot far post past the Scorpion keeper.
Just four minutes later, still with only 10 players on the field, Scorpions would strike to tie the game at 1-1. Youth National Team standout McKenzie Meehan (Boston College) dribbled past a defender and from close range boomed a shot near post to equalize.
The momentum for Scorpions stayed strong as they returned to full strength with 11 players back on the field. Just two minutes after the last goal, quick one-two passing set up Meehan for her second of the day.
Not to be outdone by her counterpart, Stock received that ball on the top left of the 18 yard box and placed a shot into the right side of the net to tie the score at 2-2.
In the first part of the second half the pace slowed down as both teams tried to not concede a game winner. Needing a win, the urgency set in for Gallagher. As more Gallagher players pushed forward it allowed Scorpions players to have more space to run with the ball.
In the 76th minute Meehan took advantage of the extra space, found room on the top 18 yard box and cannoned the game winner to the top left corner.
Meehan is one of the few players who play for the club’s younger team who were added after State Cup. Playing with the younger Scorpions team, Meehan has gained the experience of playing at National Championships the past three years. She was the top scorer in her age group in 2010 and a top three scorer last year. Meehan’s scoring prowess and experience showed as she netted her hat-trick.
Scorpions were able to effectively pass the ball around and play it into corners to run the clock out and to finish the game with a 3-2 victory. The win sets up a Sunday morning rematch between Scorpions and CCSC SOL.
"It’s been a long time coming for these guys, "said Scorpions head coach Keith Caldwell. "Ever since these players went back to college this year they’ve been talking about getting back together for this. Some have had this as a goal since they were 12 or 13 years old. We’re just thrilled to be here since it’s always been a goal for this team."