Goal at .00 gives Boyle win

September 26, 2003|JILL ERWIN

Boyle County made sure its first game in the inaugural Boyle County Classic was a classic.

Jason Hopper took a long pass from Roland Achenjang and scored with no time remaining on the clock as the Rebels topped Pulaski Southwestern 1-0 Thursday and moved into the finals of its own tournament.

"This is the kind of thing that brings a team together," Boyle coach Greg Conley said.

"You get a goal with no time on the clock to go to the finals. I can't argue with that."

Boyle (7-3-1) will face East Jessamine, which defeated George Rogers Clark 3-2 on sudden death penalty kicks in the first game, in the championship game Saturday night.

The Rebels almost needed penalty kicks, but Hopper's shot won the game.

Southwestern (4-6-3) took a direct kick withless than 30 seconds left, but it was deflected to the right side of the field. Boyle moved the ball up and Achenjang sent it across the field to Hopper, who put it into the left corner on one touch past a diving Casey Inabnitt in the Warriors' goal.


"I went with what I knew and went with my instincts," Hopper said.

"I just hit it. I didn't really aim, but it went where I wanted it to.

"We've been working all season on finishing in a small amount of time. It converted right there."

Achenjang said he didn't think he had enough time to send the ball to Hopper, but he couldn't get a shot off from his position.

"I looked for a shot, but then I saw Hopper," Achenjang said.

"I think it was a lucky ball, too, because the defender was there but it went right between his legs."

Third consecutive shuthout for Boyle

Thursday's game was the third consecutive shutout for Boyle, as goalkeeper Evan Rice had three saves.

Boyle had a 16-4 shot advantage over the Warriors.

"We outplayed them all over the field," Conley said. "We just could not buy a goal."

Conley said the Rebels have worked on late-game situations just like Thursday's for about three weeks. Boyle starts at one goal, then works its way down the field with 10-12 passes in 12 seconds.

As the game clock ticked down, Conley yelled to his players that they had two minutes to play and that it was plenty of time.

"We had two minutes left and it gets them to calm down," Conley said.

"I felt like (the result) was justified because of the way we played. If we had gone to PKs (penalty kicks) for this, as well as we played and as hard as we worked ... it was justified. There's been times when that's happened on both ways and I've thought, 'That isn't fair.' But we worked for that."

Hopper said pulling out a last-second win will pay big dividends the rest of the season and into the postseason.

"It really builds our confidence," Hopper said. "It shows we can play a hard-fought battle and come out with a victory."

Jill Erwin can be reached at

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