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Plum and Gateway girls soccer teams battle to 2-2 draw

| Wednesday, Sept. 26, 2012, 8:57 p.m.
Plum Advance Leader
Plum's Ashley Amato, at right, battles for control of the ball with Gateway senior Carly Seneca during a Section 3-AAA girls soccer game at Gateway's Antimarino Stadium on Monday, Sept. 24, 2012. Amato scored one of Plum's two goals in the 2-2 tie. Gary Bills | Plum Advance Leader

For about 50 minutes of game action Monday evening, the Plum varsity girls soccer team was in a great position to pick up a key Section 3-AAA victory over rival Gateway.

The Mustangs led 2-0 and were looking to add on.

However, Gateway stormed back with two goals in the span of two minutes in the second half to tie the game.

The teams also played for two overtimes, and the game ended in a 2-2 draw.

“It was a crazy game,” Plum head coach Mike Proviano said. “Both teams gave everything. I am really happy with the way we played. I would've liked to have kept the lead, but Gateway is a really good team. I am happy to get out with the result we did.”

Proviano said his team showed focus and resolve to bounce back from a 1-0 home section loss to Penn Hills just two days earlier.

“The girls were a little down after the Penn Hills game,” Proviano said.

“We had a great first half against Penn Hills and kind of let down a little bit in the second half. We made one mistake in that game, and it cost us. They wanted to avenge that (Penn Hills) loss (against Gateway).”

Plum, which was 3-2-1 in section play after Monday's tie, took a 1-0 lead with 15:47 left in the first half on a shot from freshman Ashley Amato.

The Mustangs made it 2-0 about five minutes later, and the scoring play started with a rocket shot from 25 yards out by junior forward Aaliyah Odom.

Odom's shot deflected off the crossbar, and the ball settled down in front of the Gateway net and Gators goalkeeper Allie Warsaw.

Senior Jordan Campeau was right there to clean things up, and she fired a rebound past Warsaw.

Gateway got on the board with 29:35 to play in regulation. The Gators tallied nine corner kicks in the game, and they converted on corner kick No. 8.

Sophomore Maggie Hil- ton delivered the corner kick into a gathering of Plum and Gateway players, and junior Emily Stevens corralled the ball and put it past Plum freshman goalkeeper Chelsea Hubner.

“Gateway basically puts nine girls in the box on those corner kicks. They are really effective with them,” Proviano said.

“But we did a good job defending tonight. Our center backs played well. We played a little different (defensive) formation after the Penn Hills game.”

Stevens then tied the contest with a breakaway goal at the 28:12 mark.

Both teams managed effective scoring chances throughout the remainder of regulation.

Gateway hit the post twice in the first overtime.

The second overtime was a flurry of up-tempo play as both teams attempted to tally the sudden-death goal.

Hubner and the Plum defense turned away a Gateway scoring attempt off a corner kick with less than 10 seconds left in the second overtime to preserve the tie.

“We get Gateway at our place (Oct. 10), and I'm sure it will be a great game,” Proviano said.

Plum was scheduled to open the second half of the section slate Wednesday evening against Oakland Catholic in a rematch of a Plum 3-2 overtime victory at Plum on Sept. 5.

The match is to be contested past the deadline for this week's edition.

Plum hosts Allderdice in a section match Friday at 6:30 p.m.

Michael Love is a staff writer with Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-388-5825 or at mlove@tribweb.com.

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