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Espe saves, Tologs prevail

Off the bench and into the storybooks, goalie Lindsey Espe's heroics led to a title run.

August 12, 2011|By Charles Rich, charles.rich@latimes.com

GLENDALE — The area's top-10 individual performances in a team setting from the 2010-11 season were selected by the Glendale News-Press sports department.

1 Espe saves Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy with brilliant goaltending, Feb. 22 — In their quest to win the program's first CIF Southern Section Division championship, the top-seeded Tologs needed to overcome a few anxious moments in the playoffs. Flintridge Sacred Heart found itself in that situation during a Division I second-round match against host Aliso Niguel High.

Flintridge Sacred Heart goalkeeper Lindsey Espe stepped to the forefront and kept the Tologs' season alive, stopping three penalty kicks in a 0-0 (4-3) win.

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"I honestly don't even know what to say, that was an incredible feeling," said Espe, who stopped Ashley McCutcheon's penalty-kick attempt after Flintridge Sacred Heart's Tera Trujillo had converted her attempt to help the Tologs advance.

Espe had lost her starting job toward the end of the regular season. However, Flintridge Sacred Heart co-Coaches Frank Pace and Kathy Desmond regained their faith that Espe could rise to the challenge in the postseason and she eventually backstopped the Tologs to the CIF title.

"What can you say about Lindsey?" Desmond said. "She came through."

2 Zeenni's defensive prowess carries Flintridge Sacred Heart to CIF glory, March 4 — All season long, Natalie Zeenni played a large role in shaping the foundation and ultimately the success of the Flintridge Sacred Heart Academy soccer team. From the season opener until the final whistle of the CIF Southern Section Division I championship match against San Clemente, Zeenni never let down.

The defender played her best when it mattered most, particularly in the Division I title match against San Clemente at Mission Viejo High.

Zeenni, the reigning All-Area Girls' Soccer Player of the Year, stopped two shots near the goal line in a scoreless battle before Sacred Heart's Krista Meaglia scored in the 69th minute. It was Flintridge Sacred Heart's third Zeenni-led shutout in the playoffs.

"I knew it was gonna be a really tough game from the beginning," Zeenni said. "I knew I was gonna have to bring it."

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