The Neshaminy High girls' soccer team defeated Central, 4-0, last night in a PIAA Class AAA first-round matchup at Northeast High's Charles Martin Stadium.
The Redskins' final three goals came in the last 26 minutes.
The victory marked Neshaminy's first state playoff win in school history. It also sent the Redskins (21-1) into Friday's quarterfinals at a site to be determined. Neshaminy, the District 1 third-place team, will face the winner of last night's Central Dauphin-Easton game.
Maintaining almost constant possession, Neshaminy had a commanding 17-3 advantage in shots on goal. But the Redskins failed to capitalize on several opportunities as solid goalkeeping by Central goalkeeper Erica Gendall-Conrad (13 saves) kept things close for a while.
All of that changed in a span of a minute midway through the second half.
Senior forward Corey Keenan scored in the 54th minute to give the Redskins a two-goal cushion. Then junior forward Jackie Giordano's goal quickly turned a close game into a rout.
"To their credit, they packed it in," Neshaminy coach Rich Reice said. "They played real good defense. They didn't give us real good looks until the end.
"I just felt after we got the second goal, we could relax a little."
That's basically what happened.
Reserve junior midfielder Rachel Giordano scored the Redskins' final goal in the 76th minute.
Junior defender Diana Rowan scored Neshaminy's first goal in the 22d minute.
The District 1 champion Lancers (15-2-1) are still looking for their first state-playoff victory. Central fell to 0-4 in the state tournament.
"The score didn't show how well we played, though," Gendall-Conrad said.
Neshaminy 1 3 - 4
Central 0 0 - 0
GOALS: N-Diana Rowan, Corey Keenan, Jackie Giordano, Rachel Giordano.
SAVES: N-Chelsea Rota 3; C-Erica Gendall-Conrad 13.