The ball approached Brooke Bofto almost as if it was in slow motion.
All the sophomore midfielder could think about as as the corner kick sailed into the box was her teammate, Jackie Wilson, who was taken to the hospital minutes earlier with a serious leg injury.
“That’s all that was going through my mind,” Bofto said. “All I could think is do this for Jackie, win this for Jackie.”
Laying her body out horizontal to the ground, Bofto connected with Synde Tingey’s kick, drilling it into the back of the net with her head. The goal broke a scoreless tie in the 72nd minute and paved the way to a 2-0 state semifinal victory over Tahoma.
The Spartans will face Bellarmine Prep at 4 p.m., Saturday in Puyallup in what is their third state championship appearance in the last four years. They won titles in 2008 and 2009, before losing to Tahoma in the 2010 semifinals.
Last year’s semifinal final loss last year was something that weighed heavy on the mind’s the Skyline players this time around — especially since they felt they should have won.
“We kind of controlled the game, but we just couldnt’ get a shot off,” said Bofto, of last year’s semifinal loss. “This year, we had a lot more determination, we were ready to win it.”
Skyline added another score with under a minute left after Maddie Christ was taken down from behind the box. The senior connected with her penalty kick to seal the victory.
Penalties were a theme Friday as five yellow cards were awarded between the two teams with numerous whistles blown for rough play.
Wilson, a senior defender and captain, went down in the 47th minute when her and a Tahoma player made contact with the ball at the same time on an attempted clear. She immediately went to the ground writhing in pain.
“When you see your teammate go down, you know you have to step up,” Skyline head coach Don Braman said. “I really think the way the girls pulled together after Jackie went down is a great example of the kind of quality they have as a team.”
It was unclear as the severity of Wilson’s injury, but Braman said it was below the knee and he doesn’t expect a return in Saturday’s championship.
The two goals marked the first time in three games the Spartans have scored in regulation against the Bears. They beat them 1-0 in 2009 after a shootout and lost 1-0 last season.
Skyline outshot Tahoma 11-3 on Friday as it improved to 17-0-2 overall.