Sophomore Hailyn Flynn and the Milton Yellowjackets will begin defense of their 2011 Division II state championship with a first-round playoff game at home today against Green Mountain Valley School. (Photo by Ben Kaufmann, St. Albans Messenger)

The Yellowjackets’ girls soccer team opened the playoffs with a stunning comeback victory over one ski academy, and the boys opened their Division II state tournament at home Wednesday afternoon, facing Stratton Mountain School at 3 p.m. at Bombardier Park.

Milton’s girls were facing Green Mountain Valley School for the second consecutive year, earning a 2-0 victory at home over GMV (3-3-4) in the quarterfinals a year ago, on the way to winning their third Division II state championship in four seasons. With the loss of three all-state players to graduation and a string of injuries hitting the team this fall, the Yellowjackets (8-5-1) had to win their last three games to get the eighth seed and a home game in the first round of the tournament.

Green Mountain survived a barrage of Milton scoring chances and took a 2-0 lead in Tuesday’s playdown game, but with less than a dozen minutes remaining in their season the Yellowjackets came storming back.

Brooke Phillips scored all three Milton goals, getting the first with just 11:09 remaining in regulation time, unassisted. Phillips tied it up with 3:33 on the clock, assisted by Erin Turner, to force overtime, and then netted the winner in the sudden-death extra period.

Milton advances to Saturday’s quarterfinals and will visit top-ranked Montpelier (11-2), which gets a bye through the first round.

Green Mountain and Stratton are both private academies that target elite Nordic, Alpine and freestyle skiers.