Once Orono scores a goal, opponents should be especially cautious for at least the next couple minutes, because another goal is likely to get pumped in.

Scoring goals in pairs has driven Orono's success in the girls' soccer state tournament. And the Spartans scored twice within a two-minute span in the second half for a 2-1 victory over Benilde-St. Margaret's Tuesday in the Class 1A semifinals at U.S. Bank Stadium.

"During the halftime talk, we talked about just playing hard for the first five minutes," said senior Sarah Michel, who scored the team's first goal.

Orono coach Erin Murray said she has seen her team score in quick succession all season.

The Spartans scored twice within a minute in their state quarterfinal victory over Duluth Marshall.

"They know that the other team's on their heels a little bit," Murray said.

The Spartans (18-2-1) scored in the 43rd minute before senior Sarah Johnston gave them the lead 1 minute, 37 seconds later.

The Red Knights (14-5-2) took a 1-0 lead in the sixth minute on a goal by senior midfielder and Ms. Soccer finalist Amanda Cassidy.

"Except for about a couple minutes, I thought we did a fantastic job of shutting them down," Red Knights coach Scott Helling-Christy said.

The victory extended Orono's 14-game winning streak and sets up a rematch of last year's title game with defending champion and top-seeded Mahtomedi at 10 a.m. Friday.

The Zephyrs won 2-1 a year ago.

The Spartans, who won the state title in 2014, will play in the state championship game for the fourth time in the past five years.


Mahtomedi 2, Holy Angels 1: Both Class 2A girls' soccer semifinals Tuesday went past the 100-minute mark, delaying Game 3 and leaving Mahtomedi players sapped by hunger.

So the No. 1 seed Zephyrs (14-5-1) took a bite out of Holy Angels. They scored early, led by two goals at halftime and forced the defensive-minded Stars to play catch up.

No. 4 Holy Angels cut its deficit by one but defending champion Mahtomedi prevailed.

A 15-yard blast from Lauren Heinsch in the third minute "got us excited and ready to play the rest of the half," said Sonia Meyer, who assisted on the goal.

"That was huge, at least for me, emotionally," Mahtomedi coach Dave Wald said. "And I think we took it at them for about the next 30 minutes."

Holy Angels coach David Marshak estimated his team's slow start at 20-25 minutes but who's counting? What matters is that Heinsch scored again in the 27th minute to put the Stars (17-3-1) in a bind.

"We're not really built to be a come-from-behind team," Marshak said. "All season long we've prided ourselves on being tough to score on."

Mahtomedi's pace held sway. The Zephyrs finished with 17 shots, well above anything Stars' goalkeeper Greta Forseth faced all season.

Teammate Gia Aleman scored a goal but it wasn't enough.