A funny thing happened on the way to the much-anticipated rematch between No. 1 seed Donoho and No. 2 seed White Plains in the boys bracket of this week’s Calhoun County high school soccer tournament. The Falcons and the Wildcats played to a 2-2 tie on Feb. 25, unsatisfactory to each, but a rematch in the Calhoun County tournament won’t be happening. Donoho and White Plains each lost in the semifinal round Friday at the McClellan fields.
No. 4 Oxford upset Donoho 3-1 and No. 3 Weaver downed White Plains on penalty kicks.
Saturday’s boys championship game is now scheduled to begin at 1 p.m. at the McClellan fields.
Weaver and White Plains finished two 40-minute halves plus two minutes of added time knotted at 2-2. Neither team scored in either of the two five-minute overtime periods forcing penalty kicks.
Weaver coach Chelsea Mize shifted Brendyn Knight, last year’s goalkeeper, from the attacking position he has played this season, to goalkeeper for penalty kicks.
“He’s just super athletic and he wanted to,” Mize said of the 6-foot-2, 165 pound Knight.
In the first round of penalty kicks, each team had four goals and one miss. The second round became less forgiving. Weaver again kicked first and a goal by the Bearcats meant the next White Plains player had to score also.
Weaver started with a goal by Jalen Barnwell. Griffin Wilburn answered for White Plains but after Weaver defender Hunter Skelton scored, Knight blocked the Wildcats’ next shot and the Weaver sideline rushed the field to celebrate the team’s first appearance in the championship game.
“They like to look opposite of where they’re going. I just picked up on that,” Knight said of his winning save.
Kyle Knight scored both Weaver’s goals in regulation. He started the scoring midway through the first half. Wilburn scored for the Wildcats with less than two minutes to play in the first half for a 1-1 tie at halftime. Layton Cheatwood got a quick goal for White Plains in the second half. Kyle Knight’s goal on a penalty kick with 1:45 to play forged the 2-2 deadlock
Oxford 3, Donoho 1: Donoho’s Spencer Wigley gave the Falcons a 1-0 lead two minutes into the first half. The next three goals belonged to Oxford. Senior forward Sergio Ruedas scored on a penalty kick to make the halftime score 1-1.
Sophomore Noah George earned the Yellow Jackets a 2-1 lead midway through the second half with a goal that deflected off a Donoho defender.
“It was pretty lucky but I felt like we were pressuring them and made them make a mistake,” George said.
Ruedas scored an insurance goal shortly before the match ended.