A disputed goal late in the first half sent two teams in opposite directions: Mahtomedi toward the championship game in Class 2A girls' soccer and Benilde-St. Margaret's toward despair.

Propelled by that goal, top seed Mahtomedi defeated fourth-seeded Benilde-St. Margaret's 2-0 in the state semifinals at U.S. Bank Stadium.

The Zephyrs (18-2-0) got the game's first goal with 2 minutes, 43 seconds left in the first half. Zephyrs sophomore midfielder Aynslea Ulschmid appeared to bump into Red Knights goalkeeper Clara Luger as she gathered in a loose ball. The collision knocked the ball loose and into the net. The referees conferred but did not change the call.

"That crushed [us] because we worked so hard the whole half and give up one stupid goal at the end," Red Knights senior Abby Garvin said. "We needed to keep our heads up and keep pushing them hard because a one-goal lead isn't a strong lead. But going that whole half, I know for a lot of people was like, 'Oh, two minutes left in the half and we let in that goal that should not have gone in.' "

Anabel Hillstrom extended the Zephyrs' lead to 2-0 in the 46th minute by sliding a rebound under Luger for her first goal of the season. Katelyn Beulke's initial shot went off a Red Knights defender right to Hillstrom.

"It has always been a goal of mine to score here at the Bank," Hillstrom said. "My whole family is in the stands. It was really rewarding. To have my teammates come and hug me right after and celebrate with me was just the best feeling."

The Red Knights (14-5-2) were held without a shot on goal in the first half and finished with just one.

Holy Angels 1, Mankato East 0: The second-seeded Stars (19-2-0) held the Cougars to three shots on goal and one good scoring chance, taking a victory in the other semifinal.

The Cougars entered the state tournament as one of the highest-scoring teams in the state.

The best chance for Mankato East (20-1-0) came in the second half off a free kick from near midfield. Stars goalkeeper Chloe Sandness didn't handle the initial shot cleanly but was able to keep it under her with several attackers surrounding her.

"We were definitely a little bit nervous, but we trust Chloe a lot," freshman Addy Judson said. "We have full faith that she can get the job done."

Kathryn Van Sloun broke the scoreless tie in the 22nd minute off an assist from Makayla Clow. Van Sloun sent a shot from 16 yards out inside the near post past diving goalkeeper Isabelle Schott.

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