West Potomac has moved into the Virginia AAA field hockey state final by virtue of a 1-0 penalty stroke win against Midlothian after tying in regulation and overtime play yesterday at Langley High School.
Rachel Burke's successful stroke attempt was the only goal in a shootout in which both teams had five attempts to score following a scoreless tie. That goal gave the Wolverines (13-3) the victory and put them in today's 1 p.m. final against Kempsville (15-5), a 2-1 winner over Western Albermarle.
Burke's shot came after a controversial call on Midlothian's final stroke. The Trojans' Beth Alexander scored on that attempt but it was disallowed for an equipment violation.
West Potomac Coach Carol Horton had alerted the referee that Alexander was not wearing a mouthguard, a mandatory protective piece. Laura Beaver, who officiated the game, then called the goal back.
Marjorie Brooks, the Midlothian coach, was unaware of the rule and said none of her players ever have worn the equipment during strokes.
"It should have been called but it was a call the official should have made and not a coach," Brooks said. "It was a game very well played by both teams. It's a frustrating way to lose."
West Potomac dominated much of the game, especially in the last 10 minutes and the overtime period.