|Posted October 31, 2008|
Martin saves the day against Mines
PUEBLO, Colo. -- Marli Martin’s (Sr., West Jordan, Utah) dad finally got to see his daughter play. He also saw her score a goal -- in double overtime. The senior from Utah rescued her team in the dying moments of Friday’s Senior Day matchup by knocking in the game winner in the second overtime against the Colorado School of Mines Orediggers, raising the ThunderWolves’ record to 8-7-2.
Despite the abundance of both parents and Halloween costumes in the crowd, neither team really got going early on. Rikki Warmack (Jr., Pueblo, Colo.) saw the Mines keeper dive to her right and deny the striker a goal in the 26th minute, but other than that, the Pack relied on set pieces to test the Mines defense.
Martin put a free kick just past the post with about a minute left in the first half, and contributed another dangerous looking free kick with ten seconds remaining in the half, but despite the attacking efforts of Martin, Warmack, and creative force Becca Drennan (Jr., Fountain, Colo.), the ThunderWolves were goal-less at the break.
The second half started much the game way. The Pack controlled the pace of play well, but genuine chances on goal were few and far between. Martin forced the Mines keeper into a one handed save with a close header, but soon after that, the Orediggers hit Chrissy Mandarich’s (Sr., Pueblo, Colo.) far post, jolting the team just enough to cause alarm.
The ThunderWolves’ defense sprung to life after that, and the back line did a good job of rounding up and driving back any Oredigger attacks. The ThunderWolves’ attacking players, however, seemed just a touch out of synch.
Up to the final moments of regulation, the Pack’s touch in the final third of the field was not quite on song. Passes that could have led to golden opportunities came slightly late or a touch too early. All that changed in extra time. Candice Duffy (Jr., Idaho Falls, Idaho) headed a sure winner over the bar five minutes in, and Drennan sent a dipping shot just wide past a desperate Mines keeper.
In the second period of additional time, Warmack almost ended the game with a swerving shot to the far post, but it was tipped wide for a corner. Moments later, Martin saw the ball fall to her feet and buried it in the roof of the net.
“It was a good way to end the senior game,” she said. “It was also the first time my dad has seen me play (this year), so that’s special,” she added.
She indicated that she felt the team was always going to score a goal, and said she was proud of both her team and the last second heroics.
Of the goal, Martin said, “It went through three players. It came up and Gabby headed it and I ran through and hit it.”
The women will look to ride the
momentum from their victory when they wrap up the regular season by
playing away at Adams State College on Sunday.