NORTHEAST GLENDALE — Alertness and patience went a long way for Kaelin King.
In a six-minute span, the Flintridge Prep girls’ soccer player showed she could use those two characteristics to rally her team to victory Wednesday.
“It’s a time where you have to get it together,” said King, who helped Flintridge Prep improve to 5-1-1. “We had to be able to do more with our opportunities and be able to finish.”
King and the Rebels, who won the Prep League championship last season, were able to finish on their chances before holding off the Tigers (4-7).
Flintridge Prep, ranked No. 9 in the latest CIF Southern Section Division III poll, knotted the game at 1 in the 54th minute. A free kick from near midfield by Flintridge Prep goalkeeper Casey Cousineau bounced a couple of times toward the South Pasadena net. King found an open space and headed the ball past South Pasadena goalkeeper Angelique Ulmer to give the Rebels momentum.
King then threaded a perfect pass to a wide open Katherine Pinney, who directed a shot past Ulmer to give the Rebels a 2-1 lead.
“On my goal, I saw the ball coming toward me and I thought the only way I could score would be to flick it,” said King, who nearly made it 3-1 when she bounced a shot off the inside of the left post in the 73rd minute. “On the assist, I saw a gap where I could make the pass to Katherine, and she had little room to be able to shoot.”
Flintridge Prep Coach Esteban Chavez said King’s play-making skills buoyed the Rebels.
“It’s all about her speed and tenacity,” said Chavez, who got seven saves from the Dartmouth-bound Cousineau. “She took a risk going in on a header for the goal.
“We told the team at halftime about being patient and doing a better job at finishing because we had a lot of opportunities.”
South Pasadena, which won the Rio Hondo League championship before advancing to the CIF Southern Section Division VI semifinals last season, took a 1-0 lead in the 14th minute. A throw-in by Samantha Figueroa got past a pair of players to Kelly Brady, who beat Cousineau with a low shot.
The Tigers pressed the tying goal late in the second half. Brady fired a shot toward the right post, but Cousineau made a diving save.
South Pasadena Coach Randy Lilavois, who coached his final match with the Tigers before moving to Alabama on Thursday, said the Tigers couldn’t put away the Rebels.
“It was a great game and we had some chances,” said Lilavois, the reigning All-Area Girls’ Soccer Coach of the Year. “On the second goal, we made a little mistake of not stepping up to draw an off side.”
The Tigers lost two players to injuries in the second half. Ryan Ramirez collided with Cousineau while going for a loose ball in the 50th minute. Figueroa suffered an apparent knee injury with about 10 minutes left.
Lilavois said Ramirez left the facility to receive medical treatment.