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Alexandria season ends with 3-2 loss to Sartell-St. Stephen

The Alexandria girls’ soccer team cruised to a 2-0 lead on Tuesday at Lincoln Field in the Section 8A semifinals, but three second-half goals by Sartell-St. Stephen ended the Cardinals' season.

Anna Spanbauer scored both of the Cardinals' first half goals, with one assist by Anna Lee. The entire game changed when goalkeeper Sarah Bruzek left with a concussion early in the second half. Without their All-State goalkeeper, Alexandria was unable to hold off the Sartell-St. Stephen attack.

Head coach Tom Roos said the team was reeling emotionally after seeing Bruzek go down with an injury.

"To lose that player with a lot of game left to play and the wind in our face, it makes it tough," Roos said. "It's an emotional setback for the team."

Freshman goalkeeper Emma Ziegler was left with the task of stopping the barrage of shots from Sartell-St. Stephen, something that was not made easy with the strong winds coming at the Cardinals' defensive zone. Roos was appreciative of her play coming off the bench in the game.

"We had a ninth grade goalkeeper come in that didn't ask for that position, but we threw her into it," he said. "She showed a lot of courage."

Spanbauer said the Cardinals continued to fight after seeing their goalkeeper leave the game.

“We saw our season flash before our eyes,” Spanbauer said. “Since our freshman year she’s always been there for us. It was hard to see that, but we kept our heads up."