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Boys Soccer: Kingsmen defeat Adams in overtime

Four goals, 94 minutes, Penn versus South Bend Adams, who… will… win?

After regulation time, Penn took command to score a 3-1 victory to advance to the Sectional Championship match.

Tensions were extremely high on the night of Wednesday, Oct. 4, when the Penn Kingsmen Boys Soccer Team faced off against the Adams Eagles. A close game previously in the season had numerous players on edge to get their shot again to blow the other team out of the water.

The winner of this game would move on to the sectional finals, fight for the title of sectional champions, and have the opportunity to advance to regionals. Teams focused on very intensive warmups, physically and mentally preparing themselves for the game. Right now, it was do or die. And so the whistle blew, and the game began.

While there were moments of greatness from both teams, it remained a balanced game. That is until one small mistake set the Kingsmen back. A long ball was played over the defensive line with a sole Adams player running onto it. Penn’s defenders raced to catch him but they were just slightly behind, and a late tackle resulted in a penalty kick for Adams. Everyone held their breath as the ball sailed in slow motion just past Penn’s goalkeeper, resulting in a goal for the Eagles. The bench remained silent, and the fans stood stunned, but Penn wasn’t going down without a fight.

Noe Ferreira was determined to score before the half ended. With a forward run and some amazing chemistry, Ferreira managed to get the ball just outside the 18-yard box. He tried to turn to get a shot off but he was knocked down and fouled, just far enough into the box to get a penalty kick. This was redemption. Ferreira lined up with the ball as the crowd quieted around him. They may have been next to a busy bypass and fans were still screaming, but for Ferreira, he was only worried about one thing, take his shot. He ran up and smashed the ball into the back of the net, easily tying it back up for the Kingsmen.

As regulation time came to a close, players were given a quick break before overtime began. Lineups were chosen and only 14 minutes remained. The ball was kicked off, and it took a minute or two, but it was obvious that the Penn Kingsmen were definitely in control of the game. They wanted to win, knew they could, and so that’s what they would do. Adams was falling apart, there was nothing that could be done about it.

Another foul took place right outside the 18-yard box yet again, and there was one person who was obviously the one to take it: Ferreira. The Eagles did their best to set a wall of people in front of the ball and the keeper readied himself for the shot, but he could never have prepared for what would come next out of Noe. He sent the around the wall bending it over the players, allowing the ball to drop right into the upper left corner of the goalframe.

The crowd exploded. Ferreira and the team rushed over to the stands as Ferreira ripped off his shirt in celebration. There was cheering, screaming, and excitement flowing from the stands as they ran back to midfield setting up for the small amount of game that remained. As if 2 wasn’t enough, another foul was given to Kingsmen and this time it was Andre Gomez taking it. From the distance he sent the ball right to the 6-yard box towards the keeper, but right when the keeper should have caught it, the ball bounced off his chest between him and everyone else on the field.

Right then the birthday boy of the day Salah Sirajuddin burst through the group, sprinting towards the ball. He raced for the ball right as the keeper reached for it, hardly getting a toe on it before the keeper dove, but his dive still wasn’t enough for the save. Salah tapped the ball into the back of the net and the team ran to the stands again out of celebration. The roar from the crowd was so loud it could have been heard from Penn and the Kingsmen extended their lead to 3-1. 

That would be the end of the scoring that night, and the Kingsmen would be moving on to the sectional championship. Both teams thanked the refs, said good game to each other, and went on their way. What was different now from the beginning of the game, was that the Penn Boys Soccer Team wasn’t just any soccer team, they were champions.

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