Lutheran's big second half secures third straight regional championship

LOVES PARK, Ill. (WIFR) Lutheran head coach Scott Lofgren harped on his girls to keep attacking despite a 2-1 lead at halftime. The Lady Crusaders came out and scored four goals in the second half to secure a 6-1 win and their third straight regional championship on Friday at Wedgbury Stadium.

"Honestly, I think these girls, if they play to their ability, skies the limit," said Lofgren.

Lutheran got the scoring opened up with a goal from Olivia Warneke less than five minutes into the match. The junior pounced on a loose ball that got away from Rockford Christian goalie Grace Ranz.

With a little more than 15 minutes to go in the half, the Royal Lions knotted things up when maddie Hougan played a perfect through ball from Isabella Villacorta and beat Lutheran netminder Becca Honzel high, short side.

But top-seeded Lutheran would prove to be too much for Rockford Christian to handle. Jourdan Brewer gave the Lady Saders the lead for good with less than six to play in the first half.

Lutheran scored four times in the second half including a pair from sophomore Grace Ling. Next up for the Lady Crusaders is a sectional semifinal match-up with either Oregon or Byron on Wednesday in Shabbona.

"I think it's just going to be depending on at this point, who's got the legs to hold out the full 80 minutes. Next game, I know whether it's Oregon or Byron, it's going to be a tough game."