Soccer trio moves on

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IL, AJ, Buford net first-round playoff wins

By The Staff




Second-seeded Indian Land, 18-4, built a 3-0 halftime lead on the way to a 10-1 win over Columbia in the opening round of the Class AA Upper State soccer playoffs at IL’s Reservation on Tuesday.

Warriors’ top scorer Nick Outen, who scored three goals, put IL on top 1-0 with an assist from Nick Retter, who had three assists.

Will Medlock tallied Indian Land’s second goal on an assist from Retter, and Outen, off a Medlock assist, made it 3-0 at the break.

Outen tallied to open the second half after receiving an assist from Jayce Cooney for a 4-0 spread.

Michael Rodriguez, who tallied twice, scored to make it 5-0, with Anthony Cutrone on the assist.

Nick Retter pushed the IL lead to 6-0 after getting an assist from Eric Sandor.

Elijah Roberts, with an assist from Retter, gave the Warriors a 7-0 spread.

Rodriguez, on an assist from Jordan Szustwal, tallied his second goal of the match to give the Warriors an 8-0 edge.

Drew Richardson, from Carson McGinn, put the Warriors up 9-0 and Cutrone, from Szustwal, capped the Warriors’ scoring for the night in the 10-1 win.

Indian Land peppered the Columbia goal for 28 shots, while CHS had 12 shots.

IL keeper Trevor Hoxworth made six saves and Jake Barton added two stops.

“Trevor had an outstanding match for us,” IL coach Adam Cole said. “Our speed up front was the difference in the match.

“We’ve been working hard all year to get to this point,” Cole said. “We’re playing our best soccer of the season.”

Julio Antonio had 10 saves for the Caps and Edmond Mansfield added four.

Indian Land hosted Buford in a second-round game Thursday.

Jackets jolt Rebels

The Buford High soccer team made the most of its Class AA Upper State first-round playoffs road trip Tuesday night.

The Jackets, the No. 10 seed, downed No. 7 seed Strom Thurmond, 3-1.

BHS junior standout Mikeem McKinney scored the Jackets first two goals and had an assist. Senior Tyler Jenkins also had an assist.

BHS, up 2-0, had an unfortunate deflection on a Strom Thurmond corner kick to bring the Rebels within a goal, 2-1.

Senior Josh Roach scored the third BHS goal on a corner kick from Jenkins with about 12 minutes left. Senior keeper Matt Ellis had 13 saves in the goal, with one spectacular stop as Buford held a 1-0 lead.

“I want to commend Danielle Beard for the spark her play gave us when she was asked to slide to center mid, as she helped us regain control of the center of the field, and started the plays that we scored our first two goals off of in the match,” BHS coach John Bundy said.

“Sophomore Andrew ‘Red’ Ellis, and juniors Brandon Gossman and Parker Melton gave us a valuable lift in the second half with their hustle and applying pressure on the Rebels’ midfielders.

“Despite the two-and-a-half hour bus ride and a field much smaller than we’re accustomed to, we played well, and the ride home seemed much shorter.

“I’m very proud of this team of young men and young ladies, and the fact our region and county teams (AJ, Buford and Indian Land) all swept through the first round of the playoffs is pretty telling of the level of soccer we play in our county,” Bundy said. “Two of the three seeds were rated lower than their opponents, but won anyway.”

Buford, 7-9, had a much shorter bus ride to Indian Land to play the second-seeded Warriors on Thursday night.

Vols down Palmetto

The ninth-seeded Andrew Jackson Volunteers’ soccer team made the long trek to Williamston and came home a winner over eighth-seeded Palmetto High School in the opening round of the Class AA Upper State playoffs.

AJ topped the Mustangs in a 2-1 win to advance to second-round play at top-seeded Gilbert.

The opening half was a defensive battle with no goals on either side.

Andrew Jackson, with a fast start, changed the score in a hurry.

The Vols posted two quick goals early in the second half to take a 2-0 lead.

Zach Arioli tallied the first AJ goal with the assist coming from Luke Kennington.

USC Lancaster signee Denton Clements scored the second goal with an assist from Tyler Denkins.

Luke Kennington played the first half in goal and had four saves and allowed no goals.

Kennington moved to offense in the second half and Ryan Burgess played in goal.

Burgess notched two saves and allowed a goal.

Palmetto scored its only goal late in the match for the 2-1 final score.

AJ, 9-9-4, advanced to play top-seeded Gilbert on Thursday night.

AJ, in a home match last week, took Gilbert into overtime before losing the match, 3-2 on a penalty kick shootout.

The GHS Indians also defeated AJ, 4-0 in an early-season home match for Gilbert.

IL girls fall at WHS

The Indian Land Lady Warriors fell to Woodruff in the second round of the girls Class AA Upper State soccer playoffs on Wednesday.

Woodruff held a 3-0 lead at the half.

Megan Roberts scored two goals and added an assist for the Lady Wolverines, 12-6-1 on the season.

Indian Land High Lady Warriors coach Mark Bonda said he was proud of his team.

“It was a really rewarding season and we finished 14-7, the best record since my start here,” Bonda said. “We have made major leaps and bounds program wide. We have a young group, and we are excited for next season.  These girls have been playing together since the seventh grade, and it’s really starting to show.”

Bonda said he knew the IL girls faced a challenge at Woodruff.

“Going into the second round, we knew we were facing one of the top girls programs in the state.  They have excellent coaching, players and facilities.  We knew they were going to give us a tough match.  With a lot of youth, we decided to play a safe formation and centered on our defense.

“This group can make you pay for any little mistake.  We were able to keep pace the first 20 minutes and had the first shot on goal for the game.  We had some mental mistakes which led to some breakdowns.  They were able to capitalize on them. The girls played tough tactical soccer and were able to keep us in the game.  Woodruff’s seven seniors and their leadership were able to prevail.  We were pleased with the girls performance and impressed with this season’s accomplishments.

“We will be back next year with a seasoned and determined team.”

Indian Land opened the playoffs on Monday when it rallied to edge county rival Andrew Jackson, 3-2.