Historic run for Montevallo girls continues into Class 4A quarterfinals

Published 10:48 pm Tuesday, May 2, 2023

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By ALEC ETHEREDGE | Managing Editor

ONEONTA – The Montevallo Bulldogs completed a comeback win on the road in the opening round of the playoffs on Tuesday, May 2 by putting together a clutch effort in penalty kicks.

With their season hanging in the balance and trailing 1-0 at the halftime break, the Bulldogs scored one second-half goal to even the score and then outscored Oneonta 4-3 in penalty kicks to earn their way into the Class 4A quarterfinals and a win away from a trip to the Final Four.

Playing on the road, the Bulldogs fell behind early in the matchup with Oneonta taking advantage of early momentum by picking up a quick goal in the first half.

Up 1-0, the home team used a strong defensive effort the rest of the period to take a one-goal lead into the halftime break.

But, similar to the boys bouncing back from a one-goal deficit in the second half a night earlier, the girls came out with a more aggressive effort on both ends of the field in the second half.

That eventually paid off as the Bulldogs capitalized on a goal from senior Leila Mendonca when she was fouled in the box. The foul led to a penalty kick that Mendonca drilled into the back of the net for the equalizer.

With the team’s defense in full control since giving up the early goal, Montevallo relied on that the rest of the way to stave off several attacks from Oneonta and force overtime in a 1-1 tie.

Neither team got many great looks in the extra time, eventually leading to penalty kicks to determine which team would advance in the postseason.

With their season on the line, the Bulldogs came up clutch in PKs with Mendonca, Violeta Cervantes, Johana Martinez and Diva Espinoza all making their shots.

With Oneonta missing one of their four shots, the fourth made shot from the Bulldogs finished off the nail-biting road win for the Bulldogs.

Montevallo will now travel to American Christian later this week with a trip to the Final Four on the line.