By MIKE READLING
© St. Petersburg Times, published February 23, 2001
TALLAHASSEE -- Throughout the playoffs, Bloomingdale coach Sue Peet has talked about her team's ability to "weather the storm."
The Bulls outlasted Durant in the district semifinals and held on for dear life while battling Wellington and Winter Park in the regionals. Each time, the Bulls bided their time while their opponents dominated and, eventually, ran themselves out of steam. In Thursday's Class 4A semifinal against Coral Gables, there was no weathering. There was no playing defense and waiting for a door to open. There was none of the Bloomingdale everyone has become used to watching.
This time, it created the storm, and it didn't let up until it had outshot Coral Gables 16-4, sealed a 2-1 win and ensured itself a spot in the final at 3 p.m. Saturday. The Bulls (20-2-4) will play the winner of Thurday's late game between DeLand and Western.
It will be Bloomingdale's second appearance in the final. It lost to Longwood Lyman in 1992. "It felt better this time," said Peet, who led Coconut Creek to a state title in 1990. "It was a lot more comfortable this time."
Though it didn't seem like it, Bloomingdale actually trailed early as Stacci Sastre squeezed a corner kick off of the fingertips of keeper Megan Robey and just inside the near post with 26 minutes left in the first half.
Bloomingdale came back 12 minutes later with a corner kick of its own when Kim Martins hit Tara Escribano, who volleyed a shot into the top of the left side of the net, the first goal Monica Silvestre had given up in six games.
"I saw the ball come over my players' heads. I called for it, and I just put it in the upper corner," Escribano said. The deciding goal came from Ashley Quaid, who had been out since Jan. 18 with a knee injury..
Quaid received a pass from Lauryn Oser in the middle of the penalty box with her back to the goal and Silvestre right on her heels. She chested the ball down, pushed it to her left foot, turned and fired all in one motion.
"I had no clue (Silvestre) was there," Quaid said. "After their first goal, I knew at this level you can throw records out the door and whoever had the most heart was going to win."