BOSTON - Shortly after missing a one-timer from in front of the goal, Independence forward Danesha Adams made amends, earning her first-year franchise a berth in the Women's Professional Soccer championship game.
Adams' header of a Christina DiMartino cross in the 103d minute Thursday night gave the Independence a 2-1 win over the Boston Breakers in the league's super semifinal at Harvard University's Soldiers Field Soccer Stadium. In the 101st minute, she failed to convert a DiMartino cross, shooting it wide.
It was the second straight overtime playoff win for the Independence, who will travel to Northern California for Sunday's 2:30 p.m. championship game against host FC Gold Pride.
"I wanted to make up for that one that I missed,"said Adams, who entered the game in the 70th minute.
On her goal, she was standing at the far post, literally next to it.
"I thought I would hit my head on the post, but it was a great pass from Tina," Adams said.
WPS rules mandate that teams play two 15-minute overtime periods regardless if a team scores. The Independence had to play 120 minutes twice in five days.
On Sunday, the third seeded Independence scored a 1-0 overtime win over the Washington Freedom while the second-seeded Breakers enjoyed a bye.
The Breakers came close to tying the score in overtime when Kasey Moore hit the crossbar from 20 yards out. The rebound came to Alex Scott, who was stopped by sliding Independence keeper Val Henderson in the 113th minute.
"In hindsight, I should have pounced on it, but I was able to get a foot on it," Henderson said.
Boston took a 1-0 led when 39-year-old midfielder Kristine Lilly sent a long pass to Lauren Cheney, who chipped it over the head of Henderson for the game's first goal in the 22d minute.
The Independence got the equalizer when Amy Rodriguez found Caroline Seger at the right side of the 6-yard line. Seger then connected with a low shot inside the far post in the 29th minute.
Independence coach Paul Riley celebrated the win on his 47th birthday.
"It's the best birthday present you could get," Riley said.
In the fifth minute, Breakers keeper Alyssa Naeher made a diving save on a 25-yard free kick by Independence defender Holmfridur Magnusdottir.
In the 14th minute, Breakers midfielder Fabiana chipped a shot from outside the box just over an open goal.
Henderson was forced to make a sensational diving save on a Lilly bullet from just inside the box in the 16th minute.
"For the most part, I felt we were the better team, but give Philadelphia credit," Breakers coach Tony DiCicco said. "They did what they had to do."