Just six seconds separated sudden victory from penalty kicks Wednesday night at Stierberger Stadium.
Trent Pabst’s second goal lifted the Washington Blue Jays to a 2-1 win over the Union Wildcats in the second overtime.
“We always look forward to playing local teams,” Washington Head Coach Derek Schriewer said. “My team has been impressive this year and Union has had an incredible program, and they’re having a great year. To get a win against a great team feels good.”
Union Head Coach Josh Wideman said his team never gave up.
“I felt like we played hard the whole game,” Wideman said. “They had a couple of better scoring chances and ended up getting on the board first. I loved the way the guys fought and never gave up. We were lucky enough to bounce back.”
Schriewer said the win is a big confidence booster.
“It’s huge,” he said. “We lost last night to a very good Liberty team with a similar setup. This proves that the kids have a good mindset. We proved we had the grit and energy to match a very good team tonight.”
Wideman said there were a lot of positives.
“If there is such a thing as a good loss, this was one,” Wideman said. “It’s one of those where we fought back to get to overtime and we played nearly the entire 20 minutes of overtime, pulling it all together. We can see that the whole team builds off of it and fights for each other.”
Washington improved to 7-8 on the season. Union fell to 11-3-1.
Pabst’s shot came as both coaches were busy preparing their shooting lineups for penalty kicks. However, those were rendered moot by the goal.
“Trent is a special player,” Schriewer said. “If I gave him a sub, it wasn’t for long. To have that much energy and pop when you get down to the last few seconds of an overtime game shows what remarkable talent he has and the endurance that he has. He’s just a quality player.”
While the teams aren’t even in the same class any more, the game was a close one between local rivals.
There was one other significant outcome to the game. Union senior midfielder Jack Wagnaar was hurt, suffering a suspected season-ending knee injury.
“That’s going to be tough,” Wideman said. “Jack’s a senior and one of our leaders. He’s really stepped up in the center midfield position for us. We needed that position filled and he came in to fill it. He said he heard a pop and felt the same pain he did last year. Losing him is going to be a big shot to this team. The good thing is that this team is leaning on each other. I have no doubt that somebody else will step up and fill those shoes.”
The two teams played scoreless through the first half and most of the second half before a goal credited to Isaac Agren set everything into motion with 11:02 to play in regulation.
Union fought back, pressuring the Washington net. And, that yielded a result with 6:30 left in regulation.
Ardell Young whipped in a pass, which Daniel Thwing headed on goal. After a rebound, the ball went to Diego Orozco, who hustled to keep it in play and then took a shot from a tight angle near the left post. Somehow, the shot managed to skid past Washington goalkeeper Mitch Gargrave to tie it, 1-1.
“That’s something we, as coaches, preach, to follow your shot in,” Wideman said. “Diego is one of those kids who does whatever you tell him. He followed in and was able to find it. The goalie made a great save on the first header and he really tried on the second shot.”
While that’s how regulation ended, both teams had missed chances throughout the game.
Neither team scored in the first overtime and the game appeared to be heading to penalty kicks before Pabst ended it.
“Boston Tinsley is starting to get into a rhythm after missing some games at the beginning of the year due to injuries,” Schriewer said. “You can really tell he’s found his flow and his rhythm, and he’s starting be able to break teams down with his passes. All in all, the entire team is playing well. We’re missing a lot of people who typically would be starters and to come through tonight with a lot of people who started the season on JV playing for over 80 minutes tonight, with one getting a goal, is pretty special for the program.”