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Palmerton edges NL in overtime

The roots of the Northern Lehigh-Palmerton rivalry run deep, and it showed in Wednesday night’s girls soccer game at Bomber Stadium.

Palmerton senior Brianna Moore kicked in the game-winner just six minutes and 41 seconds into overtime to seal a 2-1 victory over Northern Lehigh. Moore also assisted Palmerton’s other goal scored in the first quarter by Ella Baumgardt.

“It was a really, really fantastic game and effort for both teams,” Palmerton head coach Dave O’Brien said. “This is a huge rivalry, it was Senior Night, there was a lot of energy running high, and both teams were playing really hard.

“We’ve been fighting hard all year. We’ve had some close games, and I think we get better as the game goes on.”

The Bombers had a great chance to win the game moments before Moore eventually did, but a Northern Lehigh defender cleared the ball off the goal line when it appeared to be heading in.

It took just over a minute later for Moore to finally finish it off.

“We’ve won eight-in-a-row now going into the playoffs,” O’Brien said. “Both of our losses were 1-0, close games, and we’re really riding high right now and we’re excited to move forward.”

Northern Lehigh came to play in the storied rivalry game, and after Palmerton went up 1-0 on Baumgardt’s goal 20 minutes into the contest, the Dawgs answered right back on a Victoria Hanna goal to tie the game at 1-1.

“These girls went out and they played their butts off tonight,” Northern Lehigh head coach Jason Reinhard said. “Palmerton’s a very good soccer team, and I don’t think there’s any doubt we were toe-to-toe with them the entire time, and we’re actually short two of our main rotation players tonight.

“The heart, desire and determination we played with tonight ... I could not be more proud of these girls.”

MOVING FORWARD ... Both teams had already clinched a spot in the District 11 and Colonial League playoffs. Palmerton’s regular season comes to an end with a 16-2 overall record, and a 10-2 league mark. Northern Lehigh (11-6, 7-4) has one regular season game remaining against Saucon Valley on Friday.


... Both the Northern Lehigh and Palmerton goalies made massive saves which allowed the game to go back-and-forth.


... The Northern Lehigh-Palmerton rivalry is a staple of area sports, and definitely extends to girls soccer. “It’s a great rivalry,” Reinhard said. “I think you saw out there that how much each team wants to win this game. Last year, it was us 2-1. This year, it was them.” Palmerton’s O’Brien also chimed in on the rivalry. “This is a rivalry that runs deep, and it doesn’t matter what sport it is,” he said. “This year, we both came into it having really good seasons and momentum. This was just a really well-played, high quality game.”