STREAMWOOD – Jacobs senior Daniel Buirge has wanted to play goalkeeper since he was 4 years old. Friday, Buirge finally got that opportunity with the season and his high school career on the line.
“Dan Buirge is one of the smartest players I have ever coached and is always three steps ahead,” Jacobs coach AJ Cappello said. “After both teams drilled five goals, we needed to try something different.”
Although starter Preston Krahl played great in goal for 100 minutes, Buirge finally got the chance to play keeper and came through when his team needed it. After Noah Perrone gave Jacobs a 6-5 lead in the penalty kick round, Buirge came in and made the most important save of the Golden Eagles' season to give Jacobs a 1-0 victory over Streamwood in the final of the Class 4A Streamwood Sectional.
“I have never played goalie other than a few times in practice when we practice penalty kicks, but (I) convinced coach to give me a chance,” Buirge said. “I saw him look left, which is what I do when I’m going to go right, and I guessed correctly and was able to make the save.”
Jacobs advanced to the St. Charles North Supersectional, where it will face the host North Starts at 7 p.m. Tuesday for a chance to reach the state semifinals.
Krahl keeps Jacobs in the game
Although the game was scoreless for 100 minutes, it wasn’t from a lack of chances. Both teams had several scoring opportunities and relied on the play of their keepers. Krahl made five saves in the first half, three of which were point-blank chances for Streamwood. The sophomore seemed to play better as the match went on and finished with nine saves.
“They got some good shots, especially in the first half, and each time I had a nice look,” Krahl said. “After each save, I really gained a lot of confidence.”
Better second half
Streamwood controlled play in the first half, but the second half Jacobs took over. Noah Melick, Colin Walsh and Buirge had multiple chances, but each time their shots went just wide.
“Streamwood was the better team in the first half and had a lot of chances to score,” Cappello said. “We calmed down in the second half and played better but just couldn’t get one in.”
In the penalty kicks, Walsh, Buirge, Melick, Gabriel Swarthout and Liam Armstrong scored for Jacobs before Perrone was able to end it.
STAR OF THE MATCH
Jacobs, sr, M/GK
Buirge faced only one shot in the sudden death round of penalty kicks and made the save to give Jacobs the victory. The senior also scored a goal in the PK round.
9: Saves for Jacobs goalkeeper Preston Krahl.
AND ANOTHER THING ...
Jacobs faced St. Charles North, which the Golden Eagles will face in the supersectional, early in the season and defeated the North Stars, 3-2. “They are very well-coached, and we did beat them early in the season, but sometimes it’s tougher to beat a team for the second time, especially with so much on line,” Jacobs coach AJ Cappello said.