With yesterday's game tied 1-1 and time running out, Hammond coach Gay Petrlik watched her team squander a half dozen scoring opportunities against Mount Hebron. Then, she called a timeout.
The Bears responded with the game-winning goal less than a minute later.
Jenny Pollock scored on a rebound off the pads of Vikings keeper Jen Brooks with 5:35 remaining to give the host Bears a 2-1 victory in a Howard County league game.
The victory preserved a 4-0 league record for the Bears (6-2 overall), who face a showdown tomorrow with Centennial, who yesterday lost its first league game to Glenelg. Tomorrow's game probably will determine the county champion.
During the timeout, Petrlik reminded her players what they were playing for. "I told them that there was a lot at stake in this game," said Petrlik. "We're working toward a county championship and a regional championship, and the girls just really psyched themselves up."
Following Petrlik's pep talk, wing Bethany Thompson moved the ball down the right side and punched it into the circle. After the ensuing skirmish, Pollock came across the middle to deflect the ball past Brooks, who had been playing the original flurry on the right post.
Pollock, a sophomore who moved up from the JV two weeks ago, has scored three goals in five games. Playing on the left side of the line, Pollock often catches the crossing passes from the Bears' strong right side.
The Bears moved the ball well down the right side where Thompson, link Becca Meyer and back Amanda Williams dominated. But the Bears could not convert any of their seven corners or their first 11 shots from the field.
"Part of the season, we would stand and watch. Now, we all go after the ball so we tend to get in each other's way," said Petrlik.