By Matt Ulmer-
That was the time remaining in the second half of the April 13 game against Hempfield when Mariah Dimm snatched Penn Manor’s heart with her second goal. Now it’s time for payback.
Wednesday night Hempfield tied Cedar Crest 1-1, leaving them four points behind Penn Manor, and giving the Comets their first Section One Title since 2006. This has the girls ecstatic, especially the nine seniors who have yet to acquire a title. The girls also qualified for districts for the 13th consecutive year.
This rivalry has been around for years and Penn Manor’s not looking to end the regular season with Hempfield having its number. The last game took place at night, and it was a defensive battle with most of the game knotted at 1-1. In closing seconds Dimm got past the Penn Manor defense to receive a feed from a teammate and just slipped it by goalie Veronica Willig to seal the game with 14 seconds left.
At that time head Coach Bill Zapata said, “It’s a tough way to lose.”
The Comets (11-2 in section, 14-2-1 overall) are looking to end the season on the best note possible and it’s important to them to beat the Black Knights.
Assistant coach Jason Hottenstein has been around for many seasons and Hempfield’s important to him.
“That’s why we play and coach…to beat Hempfield,” said Hottenstein
“They’ve reached goal number one and that’s all they wanted from the start of the year every one of them will tell you they couldn’t of got there without the rest of the team,” said Hottenstein.
Tonight the girls are looking to send a message.
Junior Sara Bennis said, “Now, it’s just more personal.”
“I’m really pumped because going into the game champs…It couldn’t get much better than that,” said senior Meg Wilson
“I’m excited because knowing we lost is going to make us come out stronger,” added another senior Emily Hess.
They all agreed that even though they own the Section one title, they still have a large goal in mind. One of the Comet’s strong offensive players Lindsay Hutchinson recognizes her sister Emily’s defensive presence and enjoys being on the same team with her.
“It was great to be a part of it especially since it’s my last year with my sister,” said Lindsay.
“We have the best defense in the L-L,” she also added.
Be sure to come out and support the nine seniors at 7 p.m. tonight at Comet Field. It’s sure to be another battle.