She is one of the leading scorers on the Phoenix Desert Vista girls soccer team, but normally Samantha Rall would slip to the back of the line when it comes to overtime penalty kicks.
“I always freak out,” Rall said.
But she didn’t have a panic attack in the second round of the Class 5A-I state playoffs Saturday afternoon at Chandler Hamilton High School.
With the PK scored tied at 4-all, Rall nailed a low shot into the left side of the net.
Then Desert Vista goal keeper Hannah Fadenrecht rejected the Huskies’ final penalty kick shot and the sixth seeded Desert Vista had a 1-0 victory and a ticket to the semifinals against 15th seeded Tempe Corona del Sol Thursday night at Campo Verde High School in Gilbert.
“This time I wanted to take the PK,” Rall said. “Usually I’m shaky and nervous, bit this time was totally different. I felt so confident.”
Rall said she had been practicing that shot.
“I have no idea what the difference was,” she added. “Maybe it was the practice, but I was going to be sixth, then we switched at the last moment.”
Hamilton had beaten Desert Vista in a similar situation a week early, but this time Fadenrecht was ready.
“I felt a little bit of pressure,” Fadenrecht said, “but we kept a positive attitude and it’s my job is to save shots. It was more of a reaction than learning anything from the last time we played them.”
The teams had gone through regulation play and two overtimes before it came down to the one-on-one shootout.
“Defense played a big part of it,” said Desert Vista coach Paul Manoogian. “The style of play was about the same for both teams so this game came down to imposing your will; being willing to go an extra inch to win a ball or recover after you lose the ball.”