Tough soccer foes oust Port, Ozaukee

Brookfield East edges Pirates in Div. 2 playoff while unbeaten Oostburg blanks Warriors in Div. 4

A GROUP CELEBRATION took place after the Port Washington girls’ soccer team scored its second goal in a 5-2 regional win over Kaukauna. After Ella Schmit (8) did the scoring honors, she was joined by (from left) Claire Holtebeck, Katie Tyree and Payton Hurley. Photo by Sam Arendt
Ozaukee Press staff

After a comeback victory in its first WIAA Division 2 playoff game, the Port Washington girls’ soccer team got locked in a defensive battle at Brookfield East last Saturday.

Down a couple of starters due to injuries, the No. 5-seeded Pirates saw their season end with a 2-0 regional loss to the No. 4-seeded Spartans, but not without plenty of praise from coach Eric Liebergen.

“It was a great defensive effort. I’m so proud of how we played, and the heart we played with,” he said.

Port was missing junior midfielder Madison Zwicker, who tore an ACL three weeks ago. As a result, Tess Schueller, Claire Holtebeck and Kelly Fischer had to step up.

Madelyn Wehner, “our rock in the defense as a center back,” also didn’t play after she rolled an ankle in practice last week, Liebergen said. Lily Clark stepped in as a replacement.

“Clark played the whole game and did a phenomenal job, along with Makayla Masse, Natalie Lippe and Ella Schmit,” Liebergen said.

The game was scoreless at halftime. The Spartans then took control by scoring in the 75th and 86th minutes.

On May 31, the Pirates opened the playoffs with by with a 5-2 home win over No. 12-seeded Kaukauna.

After giving up a goal in the seventh minute, Port bounced back.

We kept our composure and got the equalizer from Lizzy Karrels in the 25th minute,” Liebergen said.

Schmit added a first-half goal to make it 2-1 at the break.

“It was a relief to get those two first-half goals. I can’t say enough about how important it was to have two defenders contribute to our scoring,” Liebergen said.

“They both put them on frame and found success.”

In the second half, Megan Barian scored twice and Payton Hurley once as Port built a 5-1 lead. Kaukauna scored in the 87th minute on a corner kick.

In Liebergen’s second year at the helm, the Pirates finished the season 11-4-4, their  best record in at least a decade. Last year, Port finished above .500 for the first time in at least 10 years.

“I couldn’t be prouder of this team,” Liebergen said.

“We accomplished so many of the goals that we put before ourselves: finished third in the North Shore Conference, won both tournaments on our schedule, improved upon last year’s record.

“Our seniors will be missed — it was a group that set the tone in the offseason and continued the entire year. We played for each other, and we played till the last whistle.”

Warriors make soccer strides

The Ozaukee girls’ soccer team won first Division 4 regional game May 31 before being ousted from the tournament by one of the state’s top teams last Saturday.

The Warriors ran into undefeated Oostburg and lost, 9-0, on the road.

The floodgates started to open after Ozaukee’s goalie stumbled on a slow-rolling, long-range shot that ended up finding the back of the net.

“We know that coming up to Oostburg that it wasn’t going to be an easy game,” Warriors coach Ivan Garcia said.

“I think when we stepped onto the field we were nervous. We weren’t confident.”

Oostburg built a 5-0 halftime lead. Ozaukee managed two shots for the game to Oostburg’s 21.

Goalie Emily Jankowski made 11 saves for the Warriors.

“Our defense played their hearts out. Overall, the whole team tried their best,” Garcia said.

The No. 9-seeded Warriors opened the playoffs by defeating eighth-seeded Kiel, 2-1, on the road.

“It was a pretty good game. I feel like we dominated the entire game. We had possession of the ball the entire time,” Garcia said.

That dominance didn’t show up on the scoreboard, but the Warriors got a goal when they needed it to avoid overtime.

After a scoreless first half, Kiel broke the ice in the 65th minute on a penalty kick after a Warrior committed a foul in the box.

Sonnet Bayer answered for Ozaukee a few minutes later. Bayer went down the right side, got inside the box and took a shot at close range. Kiel’s keeper couldn’t handle it.

“It was a hard shot,” Garcia said.

The Warriors’ second goal came on a scramble in the box in the 78th minute.

“It was a like a ping-pong game,” Garcia said.

“Everybody was kicking the ball. Their defense was trying to clear the ball, and we were trying to put it in there. That was crazy.”

Mikayla Penkwitz ended up finding the net on an assist from Cayleigh Ebersold.

The Warriors hung on for the victory.

“That was huge. Everybody was happy and excited,” Garcia said.

The Warriors finished the season 9-8-2, a drastic improvement over last year’s 4-15-5.

“We had a more competitive season. We did pretty well overall,” Garcia said.

“We are improving every time. I’m looking forward to next year. I think we’re going to be more solid.”



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Ozaukee Press

Wisconsin’s largest paid circulation community weekly newspaper. Serving Port Washington, Saukville, Grafton, Fredonia, Belgium, as well as Ozaukee County government. Locally owned and printed in Port Washington, Wisconsin.

125 E. Main St.
Port Washington, WI 53074
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