The Free Press, Mankato, MN

Sports

October 24, 2013

West girls soccer team earns first STATE VICTORY

Burandt, Fox each score twice in quarterfinal win

ST. LOUIS PARK — The way things were going early, Mankato West wasn't getting a lot of scoring chances.

Hannah Fox had got West on the board in the seventh minute on a breakaway, but La Crescent was controlling possession and getting a lot of good scoring chances.

But give West a corner kick, and the dynamic changes.

"We work on that every day in practice," said senior Maddy Burandt, who has been on the receiving end of 15 scoring passes this season from the corner by junior Aisha Abdo. "She's always kicking them at me, and I'm always kicking them in. It's my job to finish."

West, making its first state appearance since 2009, opened up a 3-0 lead in the first and repelled La Crescent's comeback in the second half, claiming a 5-2 victory in the quarterfinals of the Class A girls soccer tournament Thursday. It was the first state victory for the girls program.

"That's probably the best we've played all season," coach Crissy Makela said. "It's fantastic to be the first girls team at West to play at the Dome; it's really an amazing feeling."

It was nearly the first time that West had crossed midfield when Maddy Burandt's pass put Fox on a breakaway. Fox controlled the ball and shot from about 30 yards out, rolling the ball past the goalkeeper and inside the left post for a 1-0 lead.

"I think that first goal got in both team's heads," Fox said. "It gave them more motivation to play, but it also gave us an extra spark."

Before the state tournament, Burandt had set a single-season record with 28 goals, many of which have come on the business end of Abdo's corner kick. That duo hooked up again at 18:20 when Abdo sent a corner out front, and Burandt split the defense with a header for a 2-0 lead.

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