Loveland Boys Soccer won the District Semi-final

3-2 over Elder

By Chuck Gibson

LOVELAND, OH (October 26, 2020)  – They led from the first two minutes until just over two minutes left in regulation before Loveland allowed Elder to score the game-tying goal with 2:19  remaining in the game forcing overtime play with the two teams tied at 2-2.

Elder gave all they had to tie the game 2-2 at end of regulation before Loveland won 3-2 in 2nd OT (Chuck Gibson)

Loveland wasted no time taking control of the match and the lead when junior Addison Hearn launched a direct kick past the Elder keeper into the back of the net giving the Tigers a quick 1-0 lead just 1:35 into the contest.  The Tigers controlled possession throughout the first half putting constant pressure on the Panther defense outshooting the Elder squad by 7-4 in the half. Despite the pressure and shot advantage, three outstanding saves by the Panther keeper and a clear by an Elder defender in front of an open goal, Loveland held onto a 1-0 lead at halftime.

Loveland junior Addison Hearn found the net with this direct kick giving Loveland a 1-0 lead early (Chuck Gibson)

Elder adjusted their offensive strategy and seemed to create more scoring opportunities early in the second half, but Loveland defenders turned away several Panther attacks. The Tigers seemed to regain control and quickly created more scoring chances about midway into the half, but the score held at 1-0 Tigers until Ethan Harris connected from the right side giving Loveland what appeared to be a safe 2-0 lead with 17:48 left in the game. A Loveland foul gave Elder a direct kick about 8 minutes later at 9:58 to play. The Panthers converted drawing within one goal at 2-1 Loveland. NOTE: Harris goal video courtesy LHS Principal Peggy Johnson Twitter 

Score at the half Monday, October 26, Lovelnad v Elder (Chuck Gibson)

This Elder direct kick found the net narrowing Loveland lead to 2-1 (Chuck Gibson)

The score held at 2-1 favor the Loveland Tigers as time ticked off the clock down to less than 3 minutes to play. The Tigers looked as though they would hold on for the District Semi-final victory and move on to the District Final, but the Elder Panthers were not quite done yet.

Loveland defenders and keeper have a look of dejection after Elder tallied the gaem-tying goal late in regulation (Chuck Gibson)

The Panthers slipped a shot past the Loveland keeper with only 2:19 left in regulation to tie the game at 2-2. Elder players celebrated as though they just won the game. When the celebration settled, Loveland immediately put on a furious attack, but did not score. The game went into overtime tied at 2-2.

The tie at the end of regulation in a postseason match means two overtime periods of 15 minutes would be played with a two minute intermission between the two. Even if a team scores in the first OT period, a second is played with the two teams switching ends of the field. 

Scoreboard at end of regulation 2-2 tie despite Lovelnad dominance on shots (Chuck Gibson)

If still tied at the end of the first OT period, a goal scored in the second OT would end the game earning the team scoring the goal a “sudden victory”.  That is exactly what happened Monday evening. The two teams held at 2-2 through the first overtime despite several scoring chances for Loveland.

Again, the Tigers seemed to dominate possession and continued to hold a shot advantage. That domination and ball control paid off when Loveland senior Helge Harris connected from the right side sending the ball past the Elder keeper and into the net for the game-winning goal

Lots of pressure, lots of shots, Loveland created a lot of action around the Elder goal (Chuck Gibson)

NOTE: Thanks to Loveland Athletics on Twitter for Game-winning Goal video

Animated scoreboard show “GOAL” as Loveland Tigers win 3-2 with a sudden victory ending double OT. (Chuck Gibson)

The goal came nearly halfway through the second overtime at 7:45  remaining giving the Loveland Tigers a 3-2 “Sudden Victory” over the Elder Panthers in the OHSAA Southwest District Semi-final.  

The Tigers victory advances them to the District Final this Thursday, October 29, against Centerville High School at Lakota East High School. Game time is 7 p.m.

Loveland Tiger soccer team celebrates game-winning goal by Harris (Chuck Gibson)

Elder goalkeeper sits in the goal mouth following Tigers game-winning goal Monday, October 26, at Sycamore Jr. High School Stadium (Chuck Gibson)

In other boys soccer postseason action Monday night, all other Eastern Cincinnati Conference teams were eliminated from postseason play. Here are the scores from those games:

St. Xavier 2, Walnut Hills 1

Oak Hills 2, Anderson  1

Sycamore 1, Milford 0  

Loveland Girls Soccer team during National Anthem before a recent match (Chuck Gibson)

Loveland Girls will play Oak Hills tonight, Tuesday, October 27, at Kings High School.

Game time is 7 p.m.

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