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Fennell’s Late Flurry Lifts Mater Dei Over Buena

SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

Mater Dei junior Alison Fennell scored two late goals to give the Monarchs a 2-1 overtime victory over Ventura Buena in the Southern Section Division II girls’ soccer quarterfinals Thursday at Mater Dei.

Buena (19-4-4) took a 1-0 lead 11 minutes into the game, when junior fullback Amber Carr got the ball on the left wing and sliced a shot into the corner of the goal past Monarch goalkeeper Rachel Slocum-Johnson.

Buena had a chance to put the game away midway through the second half when freshman forward Natalie Sanderson was taken down in the box. Sanderson’s penalty kick went wide right.

Fourth-seeded Mater Dei (17-3-3) settled down and began pressuring the Bulldogs, and late in the game scored the tying goal.

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Buena’s senior sweeper Shannon Prentice was ejected after receiving her second yellow card. Buena Coach Trisha Kimble-Butterbaugh left only three players back on defense, and Fennell took advantage.

With six minutes left in regulation, Mater Dei lobbed a long ball toward Buena goalkeeper Katie Maxwell. Fennell raced to the ball, and Maxwell came out. Fennell got there first and slammed the tying goal into the wide open goal.

“I was waiting for the through ball,” Fennell said. “And once the keeper came out I knew I could get the ball by her. We dominated them the whole game, we just couldn’t get the ball in the goal.”

With three minutes left in overtime, Fennell put the game away for the Monarchs. She got the ball on the right of the goal, dribbled around two defenders and drilled the ball past a flatfooted Maxwell.

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“It’s tough,” Kimble-Butterbaugh said. “I had to make adjustments I wasn’t used to making. They have incredible speed.”

The Monarchs will play top-seeded South Torrance on Tuesday. Kimble-Butterbaugh said Mater Dei should be favored.

“Mater Dei has more dangerous players. They wear your team down and down and down,” she said. “They should be in the finals.”


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