Junior Alison Cooney scored five goals, including three in overtime, as the Villa Maria water polo team rallied for a 10-7 overtime victory against rival McDowell this morning at the Western Conference championships at North Allegheny in Wexford.
The win moves the Victors (19-7) into the tournament’s semifinals and qualifies Villa for next week’s state tournament at Cumberland Valley in Mechanicsburg.
McDowell, which saw its season come to an end, quickly grabbed a 4-1 lead with a series of goals off strong outside shots.
Villa steadily drew closer, eventually tying the game at 6 to send it into overtime. Senior Sarah Latzo then gave the Victors a 7-6 lead in OT before Cooney recorded her third goal of the morning. After McDowell drew to within 8-7, Cooney added her final two goals to help the Victors prolong their season.
This is the second consecutive state tournament berth for the Villa water polo team, which several years ago didn’t even have a team because of a lack of players.
Cathedral Prep against Hazleton was set to play an elimination game late this morning at North Allegheny.
Villa Maria is headed to the Western Conference championship. The Victors knocked off Cumberland Valley 12-11 on a last-second goal by Alison Cooney.