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Wildcats score late, then win on penalty kicks

November 05, 2003|by ANDREW MASON

andrewm@herald-mail.com

FROSTBURG, Md. -- The Williamsport boys soccer team's season appeared to be over Tuesday night at Beall High School.

The final minutes were ticking down on the clock and the second-seeded Wildcats needed a goal -- something they had yet to find -- to pull even with top-seeded Beall in the Maryland Class 1A West finals.

Then, seemingly as miraculously as junior midfielder Danny Gossard recovered from mononucleosis, the Wildcats won the game -- tying the game 1-1 on Phil Jordan's header with 3:29 left, surviving two overtime periods and then winning 4-2 penalty kicks.

Gossard, who was sidelined with sickness for Williamsport's first two playoff games, secured the win with the team's fourth penalty kick. "He brought his release form signed by the doctor Monday. Either that or it was a beautiful forgery," Williamsport coach Stan Stouffer said. "He played inspired ball. He's chomping at the bit because he couldn't play."

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Ben Jordan, Rhet Troxell and Chris Ciccarelli had the other PKs for Williamsport, while Wildcats goalkeeper Jeremy Draper added a huge save to the 10 he made during the game.

"I thought we were going to win the whole time. I had confidence in my team," Draper said. "We came back and got a goal and I knew it we had it from there."

Beall (16-1) broke a scoreless tie with 6:57 left in regulation, as Lonnie Harvey's corner kick resulted in a loose ball in front of the net which Adam Bowling turned into a goal.

A minute later, Williamsport (15-2) appeared to tie it, as Ben Jordan's throw in pass caught the right of the net. But as quickly as the Wildcats erupted in celebration, it was called back because no player from either team had touched the ball before it went in.

Jordan's next throw-in, with 3:29 left, was more successful. His younger brother, Phil Jordan, made sure of it this time, heading it in to tie it. "My brother just puts it in there, and I finally got one to go in," Phil Jordan said. "I've had eight goals this year, and I haven't scored with my feet yet."

Williamsport will face the North region champ, either Loch Raven or Sparrows Point, in the state semifinals Friday. Site and time are still to be determined.

"By glory, we came back and tied it up with three minutes left," Stouffer said. "I know a lot of people thought we had lost. This is a confidence booster heading into states."

Ben Jordan, Rhet Troxell and Chris Ciccarelli had the other PKs for Williamsport, while Wildcats goalkeeper Jeremy Draper added a huge save to the 10 he made during the game.

"I thought we were going to win the whole time. I had confidence in my team," Draper said. "We came back and got a goal and I knew we had it from there."

Beall (16-1) broke a scoreless tie with 6:57 left in regulation, as Lonnie Harvey's corner kick resulted in a loose ball in front of the net which Adam Bowling turned into a goal.

A minute later, Williamsport (15-2) appeared to tie it, as Ben Jordan's throw in pass caught the right of the net. But as quickly as the Wildcats erupted in celebration, it was called back because no player from either team had touched the ball before it went in.

Jordan's next throw-in, with 3:29 left, was more successful. His younger brother, Phil Jordan, made sure of it this time, heading it in to tie it.

"My brother just puts it in there, and I finally got one to go in," Phil Jordan said. "I've had eight goals this year, and I haven't scored with my feet yet."

Williamsport will face the North region champ, either Loch Raven or Sparrows Point, in the state semifinals Friday. Site and time are still to be determined.

"By glory, we came back and tied it up with three minutes left," Stouffer said. "I know a lot of people thought we had lost. This is a confidence booster heading into states."

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