Lebanon – For the third-straight meeting, and second-straight in a sectional, the Western Boone and Crawfordsville boys soccer teams needed penalty kicks to decide their match up.
Unfortunately for the Stars, the third time was not the charm as the Athenians topped them 4-3 (5-4 on PKS) to end their season.
Western Boone trailed 3-0 before mounting a comeback, but it wasn’t enough.
“Every loss is tough, but this is a loss I can deal with,” Western Boone head coach Marco Ramirez said. “Coming back from 3-0 down, that is huge. That is a big testament about my boys and what they have done this entire season. They have never given up once.”
Crawfordsville scored in the opening minute of the game, and tacked on two more to take a 3-0 lead with 12 minutes to go in the first half.
Ramirez said the Stars struggled early to adjust to what the Athenians were doing.
“Crawfordsville came out and they were fired up from the start,” Ramirez said. “We figured out their rotation, and once we did that we were able to start to comeback. Unfortunately we couldn’t come back all the way.”
The comeback started late in the first half, when Reece Thompson scored to make it 3-1.
Ramirez said that was a big for his team heading into the intermission.
“All we needed was one spark of something on offense to get us going,” Ramirez said. “We got that from Reece, and that gave us a big boost. We were the better team after that.”
Miles Clutter scored on a penalty kick to make it 3-2, then tied the game up at 3 with 6:33 left in the game.
In the final six minutes, Western Boone had three strong scoring chances, but were unable to get the game-winner in regulation.
“We were really confident that we were going to be able to get that goal to win it,” Ramirez said. “But this is soccer and it’s sectionals and really anything can happen.”
The game remained tied throughout the two seven-minute overtime periods.
It was Crawfordsville who had the best chance to score in the first overtime when Star goalkeeper Michael Dun was able to tip a ball over the crossbar to keep the game tied. The teams traded half-chances throughout the second overtime; sending the game to penalty kicks.
Last year in the sectional championship, the Athenians beat the Stars 3-2 in penalty kicks. In the regular season opener this year, they topped the Stars 5-4 after being tied 1-1.
Tied 1-1 through one round, Crawfordsville took a 2-1 lead after round two when Western Boone’s Keller Wilkinson’s shot was saved. But Western Boone tied it right back up, when Crawfordsville’s Jesus Acosta kicked it over the bar and Adam Glidewell made his shot. Each team made their next two shots, with Thompson and Ben Wheatley making their shots for WeBo.
That sent the game into sudden death PKs. Nick Wolcott made his shot, while Western Boone’s Duncan Reed saw his shot saved by Will Kellerman to end the game.
Western Boone finished the year 4-11-1.
“I am going to remember a lot about this group,” Ramirez said. “Their dedication and their hardwork. This group of seniors has been with me all four year adn we have grown up together. It was a special group.”