MILWAUKEE (WLUK) -- The Bay Port girls soccer team had a chance to make history on Saturday by becoming the first girls soccer team in the Green Bay area to win a state title.
It also had a chance to pay back Sheboygan North, which handed the Pirates their only loss of the season, and that loss led to the Golden Raiders winning the Fox River Classic Conference.
With so much to play for Bay Port made sure it didn't miss out on the opportunity. McKenzie Johnson, Erika Hess and Emma Nagel each scored one goal and the Pirates' defense stood tall as No. 2-seeded Bay Port defeated No. 1 North 3-1 to win the program's first state title at Uihlein Soccer Park.
After losing last year's state title match to Brookfield Central, the feeling was much different this time for Bay Port (24-1).
"Actually feels real amazing," Johnson said. "We took silver last year. We knew we made history then but we wanted to come back but we wanted to come back and play even harder.
"We knew we could beat that team even though they are a phenomenal team and we came back with the gold and it feels great."
Johnson, a sophomore, gave Bay Port a 1-0 lead in the 22nd minute off a corner kick and that score stood until the second half. Hess, a senior, then stepped up and fired a rocket from about 25 yards to make it 2-0 in the 50th minute.
After North scored 45 seconds later, Nagel, a sophomore, secured the win with a goal in the 82nd minute.
As the final seconds ticked off the clock the players in the sideline were jumping up and down and once the final second elapsed the players raced onto the field to celebrate.
"Feels great," Hess said. "Last year we were short, we were down three so we really wanted to make a statement. Some people said we were lucky to get there last year so we wanted to show we deserve to be here."
"This team it started from day one," Nagel said. "We worked together and our seniors showed so much leadership. They taught us how to play, how to play together, which is how I think we won. We played as a team."
Bay Port coach Brooke Mraz had nothing but praise for her players.
"This team was extremely driven this year," she said. "I'm more emotional this year winning it than I was last year. I think just a testament to this group, this unit, these 10 seniors who gave it their all, they never quit, they were always part of the team mentality.
"I am so proud of this group."
With the program's first gold ball there's a lot to be proud of.
Follow Doug Ritchay on Twitter @dougritchay