The strike came out of nowhere.
Midway through the first half Friday, visiting Shawnee Heights floated a shot over the out-stretched arms of Lansing goalkeeper Kelsie Pitsenbarger.
The goal sent a shiver through the home crowd while at the same time giving the visitors a 1-0 advantage in the teams' Class 5A regional final.
However, instead of losing its composure or abandoning its game plan, the Lady Lions soccer team went forward, not backwards.
“We just got ourselves out of shape on the field when we gave up that goal,” Lansing coach Billy Dillon said. “We knew what we did wrong, the girls fixed it and picked up the energy. They responded like they should.”
That response included three unanswered goals and a trip to the state quarterfinals after the Lady Lions downed Heights 3-1.
With six minutes left in the first half, Lansing evened the score at 1-1 when Jenna Hinckley slammed home a well-placed header.
Then, three minutes into the second half, Ashley Wilcox kicked in a shot from the 18-yard box for a quick 2-1 Lions advantage. That became 3-1 following Tiffany Anderson’s penalty kick in the 78th minute.
“We kept up the pressure and intensity coming out in the second half and that paid off,” Dillon said.
The quarterfinals are scheduled to be played on Tuesday, though who, where or when Lansing will play won't be announced until later today.