Grey Goose Score Ultimate Underdog Win

I would like to share with you my own personal greatest moment in sports, which happened last night.

My coed adult soccer team, the Grey Goose, played our regularly scheduled Tuesday night game. However, we were faced with the daunting task of playing severely short-handed against the Gigahos, a very good team at its full strength. Our league plays 7 V. 7 games, with the added requirement of having at least three females on the the field at all times. The other team had plenty of players from both sexes, plus two subs. The Grey Goose, normally a team with impeccable attendance, was sideswiped by business trips and illness, leaving only two of its male players, one of whom was the goalkeeper. Luckily, four women showed up, bringing the final count to six, still one player short of a full team but enough to face the enemy.

The strategy at the onset was to play defensive, take on the challenge of shutting down very skilled, very big, and very fast male players, and limiting scoring opportunities. The goal was to walk away with at least a tie. Thanks to gutsy defense, outstanding highlight reel saves by Erik Katchmarsky, the star Grey Goose keeper, and countless missed opportunities by the other team, the game remained scoreless at half.

Bolstered by the prospect of maintaining the tie, the Geese came out in the second half playing twice as hard, even as the opponent placed all of its men in attacker positions. Overanxious to score, shot after shot was either blocked, prevented, or launched with disappointing results. As the ball kept narrowly escaping the back of the net, the Gigahos grew increasingly frustrated.

Perhaps this frustration distracted them as Grey Goose midfielder Danielle Goodner found herself at the start of a small breakaway with about seven minutes left in regulation. After hitting midfielder Delia True with a pass towards the midline, Goodner made another run down the left sideline and received the ball back from Delia True, who immediately ran into a fleeting opportunity of open space further down the uncovered left side of Gigahos territory. Seeing Delia True make the run, Goodner made several unsuccessful attempts to pass through a much taller, intimidating male opponent, but she perservered, sneaking a perfectly-placed ball just ahead of Delia True, creating the Grey Goose's first scoring opportunity.

Determined to capitalize, Delia True glanced ahead and observed her only obstacles: the goalkeeper and a defender sprinting back. As she rapidly dribbled at full speed towards the goal, the goalkeeper inched forward, attempting to cut off scoring angles on the right side. But being that Delia True is left-footed, she saw an open angle on the upper left corner of the net and fired a shot that nailed the target. While at first overcome with disbelief, the Grey Goose immediately celebrated this goal with the excitement level of winning the World Cup, hugging and screaming at volumes heard throughout the city of Duarte and beyond.

However, the prospect of holding the Gigahos scoreless for 5 more minutes quickly refocused the Grey Goose as they returned to a defensive game. Although the Gigahos came uncomfortably close to tying it up on several occasions, the the final whistle sounded to signal that the victorious Grey Goose had pulled out the ultimate underdog win. As the exhausted but ecstatic players convened in celebration on the sidelines, they remarked that this would be one to remember.

For me, it was my greatest moment in sports ever, reminding me why I continue to play this game as an adult.


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