Muskego boys soccer team ousted in sectional shootout
Muskego tripped up by Kettle Moraine
Muskego - A WIAA Division 1 sectional championship and a berth in the state tournament were within reach of the Muskego boys soccer team on Saturday.
The Warriors and rival Kettle Moraine were tied, 1-1, in a sectional title contest and headed for a shootout to determine the winner.
That's when Kettle Moraine senior goalkeeper Kyle Ihn stepped forward.
"In the huddle after overtime, coach (Greg Prospero) was asking us who wanted to take the PKs (penalty kicks)," Ihn said. "No one was really speaking up after the first four guys, so I jumped at the opportunity. I practice taking them, and I'm confident I can make them."
Ihn's penalty kick eluded Muskego senior goalie Nick Oleniczak, sealing a 3-2 shootout victory and sending the Lasers back to the state tournament this weekend.
Ihn also successfully defended two shots from the Warriors. Oleniczak punched one away of his own before Ihn's heroics set the Kettle Moraine fan base into a frenzy.
Seniors Jake Helland and Stephen Kerns made good on their penalty kicks for Muskego. Senior Bret Perinovic and junior Josh Rieker knocked in their shots for Kettle Moraine.
The best chances for a Muskego victory in overtime came off corner kicks from Helland, which led to headers from junior forward Andrija Novakovich and freshman midfielder Luka Prpa, but Ihn was up to the challenge both times.
Muskego (18-5-3) got the lead in the 25th minute with a no-look header from Novakovich off an assist from senior defender Matt Hauke. That was Novakovich's 39th goal of the season, which puts him third in the state.
The Lasers (14-5-4) got their goal on a shot from 30 yards out from Perinovic, assisted by junior Andy Chmielewski, in the 60th minute.
Muskego head coach Eric Hess knew what his team was getting into against the Lasers.
"It's nothing that we haven't played or seen before," Hess said. "Kettle Moraine played within their system, playing direct. They did a great job of that tonight."
"This is a great feeling," Prospero said. "… This game ended in a tie, and either team could have won it."
The Warriors had advanced by blanking Mukwonago, 2-0, on Oct. 18 on goals from Novakovich and Brody Kraussel, off an assist by Helland. Oleniczak made four saves in the contest for Muskego, which notched its ninth straight victory.
The Warriors enjoyed a fine first season in the Classic 8, finishing 5-2, with the only losses to Kettle Moraine and Arrowhead.
Muskego loses five seniors in Oleniczak, Hauke, Kerns, Helland and Josh DeGrave but returns prolific scorer Novakovich, Kraussel, Luka and Aleksander Prpa and Brad Pradarelli.
Your link to the biggest stories in the suburbs delivered Thursday mornings.
Enter your e-mail address above and click "Sign Up Now!" to begin receiving your e-mail newsletter Get the Newsletter!
- Eisenhower beats New Berlin West and Cudahy in baseball
- Pitching spurs Muskego baseball to early success
- Sports Shorts: June 6
- Oleniczak, Ziolkowski advance to state quarterfinals
- Muskego runner feels highs, lows at state track meet
- Sports Notes: May 30
- Jansen leads Muskego state track contingent
- Muskego sends two doubles teams to state
- Sports Shorts: May 23
- Muskego softball team rolls past Classic 8 foes