When her team needed a boost, Sylvia Kordaczka answered, earning the hat trick last night in the Cyclones' 3-1 victory over Skyway conference rival Waubonsee Community College. Both teams were undefeated in conference until this match.
For the last few years, the Cyclones and Chiefs have faced off in the NJCAA Region IV finals, always an intense matchup between these two. This game was no exception. The Chiefs were hungry because the Cyclones have remained undefeated in the six times these two have faced off in the last three years. The Cyclones, however, played poorly in the first half, allowing the Chiefs to score first within five minutes on a free kick. For the first time in four years, the Cyclones were losing to the Chiefs.
Prior to the start of the game, Kordaczka was not expected to play as she was dealing with a death in the family and had attended a funeral just hours prior. But she wanted to be at this game. As left defender, Kordaczka is not typically a powerhouse on offense. After nearly two years playing for the Cyclones, she has scored a total of three goals. She doubled that in one game. She was able to bounce a goal over the keeper and tie the score before the half. After a charged halftime pep talk, the Cyclones came out with a new attitude. Kordaczka put her team ahead with two more goals in the next 15 minutes and the defense was able to hold off the Chiefs.
"In all my years playing and coaching, I don't think I've ever seen anything close to this kind of performance from an individual. Sylvia has had a very tough couple weeks, and she has easily been one of our best players during this stretch. I don't know how she's been able to do it. And then in one of our biggest games of the season, to score a hat trick to single-handedly win us the game hours after attending a tragic funeral is just unbelievable to me. I'm very proud of and happy for Sylvia," said head Coach Al Palar. "We played with much more of an attitude and purpose in the second half. We didn't play good soccer in either half, but we just needed a burst of energy and intensity to put the game away, and that's exactly what we did. Big win for us."