Mighty Mo was on the side of Elkhorn South on Saturday, and that was the difference in a Top 10 showdown.
Junior forward Mo Gohr scored a pair of goals, including a second-half penalty kick that gave the sixth-ranked Storm a 2-1 win over No. 8 Gretna.
“It’s a great win,” Elkhorn South coach Lindsay Aliano said. “I think we needed it.”
Aliano said a 2-0 loss to second-ranked Millard West in the season opener early in the week left her side with its “spirits down a little bit.”
Gohr helped make sure that wasn’t the case again Saturday with her first two goals of the year.
She placed a free kick from just outside of the box in a perfect spot for a score early in the second half, giving the Storm a lead.
Gretna evened things later in the half when Morgan McLaughlin headed in a corner kick from Sydney Mueller.
But Gohr calmly converted a penalty kick soon after that stood up as the winner.
“It’s early and we’re pretty young,” Aliano said, “but I thought it was a really big win. We’re really inexperienced and we just have a lot of room left to grow still. I think defensively we’re doing really, really well.”
The Storm will have plenty of opportunities to get better, though. They have regular-season meetings with seven of the 10 teams in the Class A ratings. Six of those teams will be in the Metro Conference tournament field, meaning more top-end showdowns are possible.
Gretna was playing its first match of the season after weather canceled its first two dates on the schedule.
Gretna coach Digger Hawkins said his group has only practiced outside a couple of times this season.
“It was getting to the point where it was like, ‘C’mon, let’s play a game,’” Hawkins said. “I think the first half (Saturday) was a bit of a byproduct of our first game. We just weren’t fully at the races.”
Still, Hawkins liked the way his team responded after getting behind. He called the penalty that resulted in Gohr’s second goal “tough timing.”
“We started connecting and at that time I felt like we were the better team and certainly knocking at the door,” he said. “We get back into the game and then they go up 2-1. Disappointed, really, because I felt like we should have gotten something out of the game.”
Gretna will get a chance to make up for lost time this week with three matches on the slate. The Dragons are set to host Blair on Monday, and they visit defending Class B champion Elkhorn on Tuesday before Thursday’s meeting with Plattsmouth.
Gretna (0-1).....................0 1—1
At Elkhorn South (2-1).....0 2—2
Goals: G, Morgan McLaughlin; ES, Mo Gohr 2.
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Omaha Marian 1, Lincoln Southwest 0, OT
Senior forward Grace Thede scored the lone goal in the final minute of the first overtime to lift Top 10 No. 1 Omaha Marian to a 1-0 victory over seventh-ranked Lincoln Southwest at Beechner Athletic Complex.
Thede’s second of the year helped the Crusaders improve to 3-0 on the season. Lincoln Southwest dropped its second close result in three days after a one-score loss to fourth-ranked Millard North on Thursday.
Omaha South boys 5, Grand Island 1
After falling behind midway through the first half, Top 10 No. 3 Omaha South reeled off five straight scores to beat fifth-ranked Grand Island 5-1.
The visiting Packers got a pair of goals from transfer Luke Nedic to remain unbeaten entering a Monday night shodown with rival Omaha Bryan.
Omar Fregoso, Anis Abdirahman and David Rojas also scored for South, which now has three wins against teams in the Top 10 in its first three matches. It has outscored those opponents by a combined 10-1 margin.
Papillion-La Vista South boys 3, Millard West 2
Jack Redd’s strike from distance in the 75th minute stood in Top 10 No. 7 Papillion-LaVista South’s 3-2 win over sixth-ranked Millard West.
It was Redd’s second of the match and gave the Titans a lead for good in a back-and-forth affair. Papio South lead 1-0 on Redd’s first, then surrendered the equalizer and go-ahead scores from Millard West in a matter of minutes.
Gabe Fish evened things in the 64th minute before Redd delivered the winner.