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Siemens’ OT goal lifts Holland Hall girls to 4A state title

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CLAREMORE — The difference between winning and losing can be such a fine line sometimes, and it was on Friday night in the Class 4A state championship game.

Even though her team was probably being outplayed over the previous 10-15 minutes of play, Harper Siemens scored 3:57 into overtime at Soldier Field on the campus of Rogers State University to lift Holland Hall to an exciting 2-1 victory over Metro Christian for their first state title.

Berkley Zahn had scored early in the second half to give Holland Hall a 1-0 lead, but after that, Metro Christian, which also lost in the state final last season on penalty kicks to Fort Gibson, controlled most of the action in regulation.

Sydney Maddox scored with 15:57 remaining in regulation to pull the Patriots into a 1-1 tie, but Metro could not find the back of the net again.

Then in overtime, Siemens ended it on a spectacular individual play, dribbling through several defenders into the box and firing a shot from 10 yards out inside the right post, just past diving Metro goalkeeper Tatum Sanders, to send the Dutch supporters into a frenzy.

“I was going to play it out wide, but I just took a touch inside. I was just like, ‘I’m going for it.’ I saw a lane, took it, toe-poked it in and scored,” Siemens said of the play. “Then I literally fell to the ground in exhaustion. I thought the defender was going to step to it and then she didn’t, so I toe-poked it straight to the back and (Sanders) dove but she missed it.”

It was the first time in an OSSAA state final for Holland Hall (18-1), which won its last 13 games by a combined margin of 38-5, including a 2-1 triumph on April 19 over Metro Christian that decided the District 4A-3 title.

“A stand-up job by Metro, their tactics coaching-wise, the effort of those players, Sydney’s finishes, Tatum in goal, just top to bottom they were awesome, and our girls kind of rose to the occasion,” said Holland Hall coach Troy Tokarchik, who capped his second season guiding the Dutch with his 15th career state championship after capturing 14 in 21 years at Bishop Kelley. “I’ve been telling them all year, ‘Eventually you’re going to have to own this team. You can’t rent it.’ Before the overtime, they took over. I walked out of the circle and didn’t say anything else. They did it. That shows real growth. I’m real proud of them.”

It was another heart-breaking ending for Metro Christian (15-2-1), which won 10 of its last 12 contests by a combined 33-5 – with both losses coming against Holland Hall. The Patriots conceded just six goals all season and four were to the Dutch. Last year, they allowed just one all goal season – in the state final to Fort Gibson.

“It wasn’t what we wanted. It was a great game, though,” said Metro coach Curtis Cook. “We were down by a goal, we fought back, Sydney hit a fantastic shot to get us back to 1-1. That’s the third overtime game this year, so we felt really confident going into overtime, but we just let one get away. I’m really proud of our girls, they’re a fantastic group of young ladies. Another great year for us – wasn’t what we wanted, but we’ll be back. They just wanted it so bad. It just didn’t go our way, but that’s okay.”

Zahn scored 9:03 into the second half on a header from about 10 yards out when Siemens delivered a free kick from just beyond the right corner of the box to her in the middle. Zahn’s shot hit the upper left corner for her team-leading 23rd goal of the season and Siemens’ 27th assist.

“What a header,” Tokarchik said of the play. “Great ball in, she went and got the ball, just a tiger going after it.”

The momentum began to swing Metro Christian’s way after that and Maddox nearly tied it with 18:09 remaining when she sped in alone on a breakaway, but Holland Hall goalkeeper Annabelle White charged out and made a nice leg save on Maddox’s shot from 15 yards out.

Just over two minutes after that, Maddox did get the equalizer on a similar play, as she raced past several defenders into the box, but this time she stopped about 12 yards out and then popped it over White into the upper right corner.

Metro continued to push for another one but Holland Hall’s defense withstood the pressure. Then the Dutch senior leadership group took over during the break between regulation and overtime.

“Most of it came from Taylor Zahn, our center back,” Siemens said of the pre-OT players-only pep talk. “She gets everyone pumped 100 percent, she’s screaming at us, telling us to go to the ball and we did that exactly.”



Metro Christian 0 1 0 — 1

Holland Hall 0 1 1 — 2

Goals: MC, Maddox; HH, B. Zahn (Siemens), Siemens. Saves: MC, Sanders 2; HH, White 7.

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