LEWISTOWN - All game, Cedar Cliff was trying to get behind Mifflin County's defense. And it seemed like only a matter of time before the Colts' strategy would pay off.
Mifflin County, on the other hand, dug itself a hole early and clawed to get out of it.
The Huskies got out. Sam Peters' goal with 9:34 remaining on the second-half clock eventually forced overtime.
Sentinel photo by BRADLEY?KREITZER
Mifflin County’s Sabrina Boring, second from right, winds up for a shot between Cedar Cliff defenders Nicole Rupnik (30) and Tara Kelly as Cedar Cliff’s Tarryn Morris (9) and Mifflin County’s Grace Wagner look on. See more photos online at cu.lewistownsentinel.com
But once overtime got started, Cedar Cliff was visibly trying to beat the Huskies over the top. The Colts did.
Olivia Evans' second goal of the game came with 7:39 on the overtime clock to hand the Huskies a 3-2 loss - their first of the season.
"I wasn't happy with the first half," Mifflin County coach Tish Maclay said. "That put us in a hole. I was incredibly happy with the effort in the second half and overtime."
Mifflin County travels to the Selinsgrove tournament Saturday
The first half was a little bit of a struggle for Mifflin County. Cedar Cliff's first goal came from another deep ball from Evans to Nicole Rupnik 13 minutes into the first tilt. But keeping their heads high, the Huskies kept digging.
"We tried to play through their sticks too much (in the first half)," Maclay said. "What we really needed to be doing was more passing and spreading the game out side to side. We got sucked into the middle."
But four minutes later, Mifflin County cashed in.
All game long, the Huskies were inside the visitors' circle. Colt keeper Maria Jacobs was tied up in the middle when she hit the ground and the ball was trapped under her. The Huskies were awarded a penalty shot.
Peters stepped up. And with a sweep of her stick, she sent a laser to Jacobs' right side in for Mifflin County's first score.
"Once we started realizing lets work our passing game it made a huge difference," Maclay said.
Throughout the game, Maclay was on her players about getting quicker shots and passes against the Colt defense. In the second half, things were starting to shift the Huskies' way.
On back-to-back clean possessions for Mifflin County with fewer than 25 minutes to play in the game, Peters was free on the left side and tried to slide the ball to Whitney Strohecker in the middle. The duo, who combined for five goals against Chambersburg Wednesday, were getting looks but not finishing.
For about eight straight minutes in the second half, Mifflin County dominated while the Colts were still trying for the long ball.
"They were down 2-0 and never quick," Maclay said. "We fought all the way back and tied it up."
The hard work inside the circle paid off for the Huskies with just under 10 minutes to play. Peters started a drive from the left side and sent the ball to the middle. A scramble for possession ensued and after four Husky shots, Peters got the ball back and found the cage.
When the game went to sudden victory, both teams were pressing with a storm bearing down.
The Huskies' game plan was to start the period in attack mode. Peters had a good look just when the overtime kicked off and couldn't finish. But the same went for Cedar Cliff.
Each team had open looks, and lots of them. In one instance, Peters came up the left side and found Strohecker in the middle. The duo couldn't convert.
"We had chances in overtime to score," Maclay said. "It was an exciting game."
Cedar Cliff finally put the game away when a long pass got behind the Mifflin County defense and Evans was able to find the cage and finish off the Huskies.
"She got out there and we knew she was going to get out there," Maclay said. "We played it the way we wanted to. It was a good shot on her part."
Mifflin County travels to Selinsgrove's Turf Fest tournament Saturday to take on Crestwood and Selinsgrove.