Naperville North denies Barrington in OT, wins Naperville invite

There’s gourmet cooking and Saturday’s Naperville Invitational final between Naperville North and Barrington could easily be considered gourmet girls soccer.

The two teams going in had a combined record of 27-2-2, the championship of one of the area’s biggest tournaments was at stake and two quality teams faced the challenge of playing a lot of soccer over the past few days.

It would be Naperville North that would prevail in this battle 2-1 in overtime on Maggie Fitzgerald’s score almost four minutes into the extra time.

It’s the Huskies’ first Naperville Invitational title since 2017. It was also the second time this season that North (14-1-2) beat Barrington.

“The first half wasn’t good enough for us and the girls knew it,” said Huskies coach Steve Goletz of the scoreless first half at Naperville Central. “This group is special and sometimes needs to be pushed.”

Fitzgerald finished this weekend with two game-winning goals that were essentially the same play and with the same players. Her score on Friday confirmed a 1-0 victory over previously unbeaten Lyons Township.

        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        
        

“The first half (Saturday) was a bit of a struggle. We had to come through,” she said. “Norah (Barry) is amazing getting the ball in on long throws.”

Goletz said Fitzgerald is the right player to go to when situations that set up the team’s last two game-winning goals come up.

“It’s no secret that when we get the ball in the box on restarts that Maggie is so good on her feet,” he said.

The Fillies (14-2) were playing their fourth game in as many days, which included a conference contest. North was playing its third game in three days, all Naperville Invitational games.

“You have to fight more and be mentally tough,” said Naperville North’s Lucy Iverson. “I’m really proud of our team. We played our best and came out in the second half aggressive.”

Iverson assisted on Cameron Dinkla’s match-tying goal in the second half just 41 seconds after Barrington took the lead on Piper Lucier’s score.

“After the score we felt energized. I had the opportunity to turn the (Barrington) girl and take the shot,” Dinkla said.

Winning goalkeeper was Abby Haskell finished with seven saves.

“We didn’t respond well after that first score,” said Fillies coach Ryan Stengren. “Both teams were beat up. We learned a lot about ourselves and I got a lot of girls in.

“Naperville is a very quality team. One of the best.”

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