ELK GROVE — Julia Crawford and Nina Grimes delivered for the Oak Ridge High girls soccer team Wednesday.
Crawford scored two goals, including one in penalty kicks, while Grimes made a huge PK save for the Lady Trojans in their Sac-Joaquin Section Division I semifinal game against Franklin that produced a 3-1 victory on PKs.
The game was tied at 1-all after regulation and two, 10-minute halves.
Tomorrow, Oak Ridge plays Delta River League foe St. Francis for the blue banner. In two league meetings this season, the Trojans are 0-1-1 against the Troubadours.
After a scoreless overtime Wednesday, Oak Ridge (12-4-5) and Franklin (19-1-5) went to the shootout. After Franklin made its first PK, Oak Ridge’s Anna Lippuner tied it on her free kick.
After the Wildcats’ second shot was stopped by Trojan goalie Nina Grimes, Oak Ridge’s Nicole Mazzone scored for a 2-1 advantage. Franklin’s next shot hit the lower part of the bar, which set up Crawford’s decisive shot. The Wildcats’ fourth attempt wwent wide.
“It was really beneficial to be able to relax before I kicked my PK,” Crawford said.
Franklin missed its chance to score its second PK, sending Crawford and the Lady Trojans into the title game.
“We feel we have a solid team,” Oak Ridge coach Joe Champion said. “We knew this was going to be a battle.”
The Wildcats scored their only goal in the game in the ninth minute of the contest. Then in the 53rd minute of the game, Crawford tied the game on a corner kick.
“I think as soon as we scored the goal, we were going to win,” Champion said.
Playing for the section title is huge for the Lady Trojans.
“We have a lot of seniors,” said Crawford, one of 11 on the team. “I’m pumped up for it.”