JOHNSON CITY — Creighton Shivell scored two spectacular header goals to lead Sullivan South to a 2-1 victory over University School in Thursday's District 1-A/AA boys soccer final at Summers-Taylor Stadium on the campus of East Tennessee State.
With the win, the Rebels (10-8-2) earn a berth in Tuesday's Region 1-A/AA semifinals and will host the loser Chuckey-Doak, which lost to Greeneville 5-0 on Thursday. The Bucs (5-8-1) must travel to take on the Greene Devils the same night.
A flurry of goals, just three minutes apart in the first half, proved to be the tale of the tape between South and University School.
When the Rebels' Cole Killen crossed a ball from the right side of the Bucs' defense, Shivell raced forward and just off the left post headed the ball cleanly past University School goalkeeper Lucas Wexler. With only 11 minutes gone in the contest, South had a 1-0 lead.
One minute later, the Bucs Ramiro Rodriguez found himself in front of the South goal as the ball rolled right onto his foot. His shot found the back of the Rebels' net and suddenly the score was tied 1-1.
Like dj vu all over again, Shivell got another cross, this time from teammate Colton Young, and he again headed it in from just off the left post to put South on top 2-1 in the 14th minute.
"They just weren't marking me," said Shivell. "I made the run into space and the ball was right there."
From that point on in the first half, the two teams traded blows, but neither could find the net again.
As time wound down in the second half, University School made several forays into the South penalty area, but to no avail.
The Rebels, on the other hand, hit the crossbar and the goalpost of the Bucs' goal. They desperately tried to earn an insurance goal, but ultimately it was not needed.
"It was getting frustrating late," said South coach Keith Parker. "University School was getting close to scoring and we just wanted to get that third goal.
"But I'm so happy for our guys. Our defense was solid and held them under control late."
Just two weeks ago, the Bucs dealt the Rebels a 3-0 defeat and claimed the regular season title. On this night, South got the win that mattered most.
"The kids made a point to come out with a better effort tonight," added Parker. "Here at the end of the season we are playing together as a team. That was the key tonight."
University School was playing without starter Lowell Williams, who suffered a head injury in the win over South two weeks ago.
"It's tough to play without him but the team is dealing with it and we are moving on," said Bucs coach Tony Houston. "What I liked is that our guys battled to the end."comments powered by Disqus