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District soccer roundup: Wildcats advance with last-second goal

By The Examiner staff
Blue Springs' Matthew Martinez (11) and Columbia Rock Bridge's Andrew Copeland fight for possession in their Class 4 District 9 semifinal Monday at Columbia Hickman High School. Martinez scored on a free kick as time expired to lift the Wildcats to a 2-1 victory.

It wasn’t exactly how Blue Springs coach Michael Palermo would have drawn it up.

Matthew Martinez scored with just seconds left to lift the Wildcats to a 2-1 victory over Columbia Rock Bridge in a Class 4 District 9 boys soccer semifinal Monday night at Hickman High School in Columbia.

“I didn’t think we were at our best tonight, but we were able to come away with win,” Palermo said after his 11-8 Wildc advanced to Wednesday’s 6 p.m. championship match against host Columbia Hickman, a 2-1 winner over Blue Springs South. “It doesn’t have to be pretty in postseason.”

Dom Zubeck was fouled with about 10 seconds left, resulting in a free kick. Martinez beat the Rock Bridge goalkeeper with his kick and the referee blew the final whistle seconds after.

Sawyer Turpin gave the Wildcats a 1-0 lead with a goal in the 10th minute and the Wildcats maintained that advantage until halftime.

Rock Bridge tied it with what Palermo described as a “very questionable” penalty kick in the second half before Martinez buried the game-winning shot.

COLUMBIA HICKMAN 2, BLUE SPRINGS SOUTH 1: Sometimes soccer can be cruel.

Blue Springs South tied it up with about two minutes left, only to lose it with just seven seconds left on a penalty kick.

The Class 4 District 9 semifinal loss to the Kewpies ended the Jaguars’ season at 11-10.

“I’m really proud of the boys and the amazing season they put together in such a weird year,” Jaguars coach Jon Grice said of his team, which had won six of its last seven entering district play. “I’m glad we got to have this season with them and I’m so thankful for their sacrifices all season. I’m sorry it ended this way, but I’m proud of their second-place conference finish and how they handled themselves on and off the field this year.”

Blue Springs South's Daniel Park (8) and Columbia Hickman's Cash Schopflin (24) battle for the ball in Monday's Class 4 District 9 semifinal at Hickman. The Jaguars' season came to an end with a 2-1 loss.

Jacksyn McIntyre set up the tying goal, saving the ball from going out of bounds and then hitting Peyton Cole with a pinpoint pass. Cole chested the ball in the goal to tie it in the 78th minute.

After South had a pair of quick chances, the Kewpies booted the ball into a South defender at the top of the 18-yard box. The referee ruled it a handball and awarded Hickman a PK, which it converted for the win.

Hickman (11-5-2) scored in the 15th minute to take a 1-0 lead but Grice said that his team limited the Kewpies’ chances for the rest of the game until the penalty kick.

GRAIN VALLEY 6, WARRENSBURG 2: Grain Valley had its offensive attack mostly in high gear Monday.

Led by Micah Siems’ two goals, the Eagles scored often in a 6-2 victory over Warrensburg in a Class 3 District 8 semifinal at Clover Dell Park in Sedalia, but coach Brett Lewis said his team could have had more.

“Did a good job controlling possession and creating a lot of opportunities in the final third of the field,” Lewis said after his team advanced to Wednesday’s 6 p.m. championship match against the host Sedalia Sacred Heart Gremlins. “Really should have scored several more, but we’ll work on finishing opportunities before Wednesday’s match.”

Siems sparked the Eagles (8-11) early, scoring in the fifth and 11 minutes, both on assists by JR Brown.

Kade Compton scored on an assist from Owen White in the 19th minute, and Jude Quick made it a four-goal first half with an unassisted tally in the 31st minute.

Carter Compton scored on Brown’s third assist in the 57th minute and assisted on Campbell Childers’ goal in the 69th minute to cap it.

Now the Eagles focus on Sacred Heart, which has won nine straight but has not played since Oct. 15 because of cancellations.

“Big game on Wednesday against a very defensively disciplined Sacred Heart team,” Lewis said of the Gremlins (12-4), who had a bye when St. Paul Lutheran of Concordia decided to forfeit because of COVID-19 concerns. “It’s going to take us playing really good soccer for 80 minutes to come away with a result. We’re looking forward to the challenge.”

LEE’S SUMMIT WEST 2, LEE’S SUMMIT NORTH 1: Lee’s Summit North coach Ryan Kelley thought his team finally had a chance to knock off crosstown rival Lee’s Summit West after two losses earlier this season.

But the Titans made it 3-0 against the Broncos this season, ending their run with a 2-1 victory in a Class 4 District 13 semifinal Monday night at Raymore-Peculiar High School.

“We went into the match with a good plan and we executed that plan about as well as we could, but we unfortunately could not find the back of the net enough,” Kelley said after his team finished 8-9.

North nearly took a lead in the first half when Jose Vega’s shot was saved by the West goalkeeper and the rebound went just over the crossbar.

Broncos goalkeeper George Camburako kept it scoreless at halftime with a pair of diving saves and pushing a strong West shot over the crossbar.

Early in the second half, Camburako tried to push another shot over the crossbar but couldn’t get enough on it on a West restart as the Titans went up 1-0. West made it 2-0 shortly after that.

Liam Frank cut the deficit to 2-1, scoring after a through ball from Tyler Dailey in the 60th minute.

The Broncos nearly tied it but a shot by Cameron Wilcox went just wide and a West defender cleared the ball off the line on a North corner kick.

“Our boys showed great grit and heart on the night,” Kelley said. “We played hard and put our team in position to be successful, we just could not find the quality around the goal that was necessary to be able to finish our chances.” 

The Titans (14-5) advance to Wednesday’s 7 p.m. championship match against Lee’s Summit (14-3) at Ray-Pec.

TRUMAN 2, FORT OSAGE 0: Truman scored two second-half goals Saturday to advance to Tuesday’s Class 4 District 14 championship.

Chris Alessio scored in the 42nd minute to put the Patriots ahead 1-0 in the semifinal at Rockhurst High School.

Johnathan Contreras added an insurance goal with about 13 minutes left and goalkeeper Francisco Bonilla closed out the shutout.

The Patriots improved to 10-8 and will face top-seeded Rockhurst Tuesday night for the title. It’s the sixth straight year Truman will play the Hawklets in the district final, with the previous five meetings being losses.