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Cinderella Grapevine girls continue past Hebron

CARROLLTON, Texas -- The Grapevine girls soccer team continued its Cinderella run through the Class 5A playoffs Tuesday, knocking off ESPN Rise FAB 50 No. 19 Hebron, 3-2, in overtime at Hebron.

Grapevine senior midfielder Clarissa Wedemeyer found the back of the net for the game-winner off a free kick from just outside the box with just over three minutes remaining in the second overtime. Wedemeyer found a crease between the wall and the Hebron keeper and ripped a shot that went untouched into the back left corner of the goal.

“I was just looking for any space,” Wedemeyer said. “They had so many people on the wall; I was just trying to get it around them. I wanted it in the goal, so I guess I put it where I wanted it.”

The goal was Wedemeyer’s second of the night. Her first came in the fourth minute of the game to give Grapevine its first lead. After dribbling through two Hebron defenders, Wedemeyer rolled a shot to the far right corner of the goal past the diving keeper.

“What’s more important to me is that my team won,” she said. “If I can be a part of that, that’s what I want to do.”

Hebron countered halfway through the first half on a header by Olivia Elliott. Elliott was able to get a head on a ball that was sent in by Madison Purdy after it bounced around players in front of the net.

Grapevine regained the lead on a highlight-reel goal five minutes into the second half. Junior defender Jade Dapaah sent a ball in from midfield off the free kick that landed right on the head of a streaking Tori Bowman just outside the six-meter box. Bowman’s header sent the ball off the left upright and trickling into the net for the score.

The Hail Mary assist was Dapaah’s second in as many games after she put one on target from distance against Coppell on Friday.

“We have a lot of good players that can head the ball in, so whenever I get a far free kick I know the targets we need to hit so we can actually get a goal,” Dapaah said.

“She is just a tremendous judge of the ball and obviously she has great touch for the ball in her kicks,” Grapevine coach Ryan Davis said.

Hebron forced overtime on a 25-yard shot by Ellen Starnes that tipped off Grapvine goalkeeper Katy Keefer’s fingers and rolled into the net.

Davis used three keepers throughout the course of the game, starting senior Morgan Harrison, a San Angelo State commit. He sent out Keefer for the majority of the second half and subbed in freshman Taylor Braun for the end of the second and overtime. Davis said he wanted to give both seniors their due time in the playoffs but recognized each player's ability.

“They each have strengths at different parts of the game, and I feel like I would use that in goal as I would a midfielder or a forward or an outside mid," he said. "And if we have three great ones that excel at certain parts of the game, then I want to use them.”

Grapevine entered the playoffs unranked by ESPN Rise, but knocked off Midlothian and No. 3 in the state Coppell to reach the regional quarterfinal against Hebron. Coppell had knocked off state No. 10 Plano West before losing to the Mustangs on Friday. Hebron entered the playoffs No. 6 in the state and rose to No. 5 before Tuesday’s loss.

“We believe in each other and we’ve been working hard for this,” Davis said. “We’ve met some great opponents and we know that. We have strength in our organization and the work ethic as a team and the belief we have as a team, and we’re enjoying the ride.”

Grapevine will travel to Midland’s Grande Communications Stadium to take on Midland in the regional semifinals Friday at 3 p.m.