By Geoff Kimmerly
Second Half editor
Bloomfield Hills Marian entered the 2019 Girls Soccer Finals with the third-most championships in the sport in MHSAA history, and seeking to become the seventh program to win three in a row.
A familiar opponent awaited. And eventually so too did sophomore Maria Askounis as the final minutes of overtime ticked down.
Her tap-in of a rebound with 4:18 left in overtime last June 14 gave Marian a 2-1 lead on its way to clinching the Division 2 championship over Grand Rapids Forest Hills Northern, which the Mustangs also had defeated in the 2017 and 2018 championship games.
The title was Marian’s eighth total and its third straight, a program first after previous teams won two consecutive on two occasions.
Forest Hills Northern opened the scoring on Grace Sayers’ goal just past five minutes in, and Emily Rassel tied it 1-1 with a goal four minutes into the second half. As overtime wound down, Marian’s Sara Stroud fired a corner kick that was headed by Rassel toward the goal, deflected off the keeper and pounded into the net by Askounis.
“My coaches told me to stay at the far post, and so I stayed on the far post,” Askounis said that day. “That’s where the ball went, and I just tapped it in. I scored last game, but not like this in the state championship. It feels amazing.”
Click for coverage from Second Half and watch the game winner below from the NFHS Network.
Be The Referee is a series of short messages designed to help educate people on the rules of different sports, to help them better understand the art of officiating, and to recruit officials.
Below is this week's segment – Soccer Referee Jersey Colors - Listen
A soccer match is about to start between two teams – one wearing road white uniforms and one wearing its home blues. It’s pretty easy to spot the referee in the middle of the field wearing a bright yellow referee jersey.
But what if the home team is nicknamed the Yellow Jackets and they are also wearing bright yellow jerseys?
Soccer officials come prepared. They have a number of different colored jerseys, so they can wear something that contrasts with both teams. While yellow is the default color, they can very easily change into a distinctive uniform if needed – as red, blue, green and black are also acceptable colors. They may even choose to wear a color different from what the goalkeepers are wearing. The last thing a referee wants is to be mistaken for a player on the field.
Oct. 18: Cross Country Tie-Breaker - Listen
Oct. 11: Soccer Shootouts - Listen
Oct. 11: Safety in End Zone - Listen
Oct. 4: Football Overtime Penalty - Listen
Sept. 27: Kickoff Goal - Listen
Sept. 20: Soccer Timing - Listen
Sept. 13: Volleyball Replays - Listen
Sept. 6: Switching Sides - Listen
Aug. 30: Play Clock - Listen
Aug. 23: Intentional Grounding Change - Listen