Wolverines Advance after Penalties


Photo by @T_Edward_Photo on Twitter

Up 3-2 in penalties after two saves from senior goalkeeper Hayden Owens, senior defender Ryan Gibson lined up to take the final kick.  As the students anxiously looked onward from the edge of the bleachers, Gibson shot it into the bottom left corner of the goal, far out of Centennial’s goalkeeper’s reach, and the whole team immediately ran towards the student section.  With the players jumping and hugging their friends, it was another victory for the Wakeland boys soccer team.  They had just won the Bi-District Championship against Centennial after being tied 1-1 at the end of regular time.

“I had a feeling he was going to put it in, and it was an awesome feeling to celebrate with the team and all the fans there,” Owens said.  

The great environment that the Wakeland fans provided was familiar to the older players like Owens and Gibson but was a new experience for the younger players on the team.    

“It’s different than what I’m used to [because I have] never experienced it before,” sophomore forward Luke Lacy said.  “[The older players made] me feel like I should be there.”

However, despite being new to the playoff atmosphere, Lacy was not fazed by it.  In the second half, he was the one that scored to tie the game at 1-1 and send the Wolverines to overtime and penalties.

“It definitely got us where we needed to be, got us to [penalties], and we ended up winning the game,” Lacy said.

After being down for the entire first half, they were able to feel more confident about the outcome of the game after Lacy’s goal.  

“We felt a relief because we got off the chopping block of losing, so we could finally focus on trying to win it,” Owens said.

In the next games, they will look to be more effective in the final third, so they are able to win in regular time.  

“I think we just [had] a lot of silly mistakes that we could’ve avoided.  [We need] to finish our chances because we hit the post quite a few times,” Lacy said.  

Next, the Wolverines will play West Mesquite at 7:30 p.m. at West Mesquite Memorial Stadium in the area round.

“The first win feels like the hardest because we didn’t have much experience in the playoffs before.  Now that we have that, I feel like everybody is more relaxed,” Owens said.

Come support the Wolverines as they look to win another State Championship!  Tickets can be bought at tickets.friscoisd.org.