The Tucson Catalina Foothills girls soccer team survived a sloppy, muddy game against Chaparral on Thursday night at Dobson High School to win 3-2.
The victory vaults Catalina Foothills into the Class 4A state championship for the second straight year.
Catalina Foothills (21-1-1) will face off against Glendale Cactus (15-1-5) on Saturday at 11 a.m. at the Arizona State University soccer stadium.
Cactus, which beat Flagstaff 2-0 Thursday, beat Foothills 1-0 in last year's championship game.
A heavy downpour in the Valley turned the middle of Dick Pallas Field into a bog, forcing the teams to try to keep the ball in the air.
But the shot that turned out to be the game-winner, by Ashley Wallach in the 68th minute for a 3-1 lead, was a slow roller that just barely crossed the goal line.
Wallach's score had added importance in the closing minutes when Chaparral's Lauren Shapiro headed in a perfect cross in the 76th minute to close the score to 3-2.
But the Falcons’ defensive line was able to clear the ball out of its end and kept the ball deep in Chaparral territory, preventing a last-second shot by Firebirds forward Brittanie Bode to end the game.
Levise Robertson and Tai Powers both scored in the first half to give Foothills a 2-0 lead at the intermission.
Chaparral (15-4-1) would answer at the beginning of the second half when Liz Ray scored on a free kick from the top of the Foothills penalty box to close the score to 2-1 in the 64th minute.
Wallach answered four minutes later to put the game out of reach.