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RHHS boys’ soccer takes region title

POSTED: April 14, 2017 9:24 p.m.
Ted O'Neil/

Richmond Hill students swarm the boys' soccer team after winning the region championship against Glynn Academy Friday night.

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The Richmond Hill boys’ soccer team defeated Glynn Academy on penalty kicks at home Friday night to capture the Region 2-AAAAAA crown, avenging a double-overtime loss to the Terrors six weeks ago.

The Wildcats finish the regular season at 14-2-2 and 7-1 in the region, while Glynn finishes at 12-3, 6-2.

“I knew with a game of this magnitude that the guys would leave it all on the field,” Richmond Hill Coach Robbie Flanders said. “The timing worked to our advantage because we’re off for spring break and then don’t play again until the Friday after we return, so we could go all out tonight.”

As the No. 1 seed from their region, the Wildcats will host the No. 4 seed from Region 4-AAAAAA in the first round of the state tournament on April 28.

After finishing regulation play tied and two overtimes at 1-1, each team converted six penalty kicks until Glynn’s seventh kicker hit the right goal post. Jospeh Petrino converted the next shot for the Wildcats for the win. Petrino, an all-region kicker for the Richmond Hill football team last fall, hit the cross bar with 3:35 left in the second overtime.

“He’s got a heck of a leg, that’s for sure,” Flanders said. “But he’s used to kicking footballs, so he just has to learn to control the ball a bit more in this game.”

Richmond Hill scored first on a goal by Agboade Sobowale with 15:44 left in the first half, with an assist by Michael Hoffman.

Glynn tied the game less than eight minutes into the second half when a corner kick bounced around in front of the Richmond Hill net and went in.

“I’ll have to watch the tape, but it might have been an ‘own-goal’ when our guys were trying to clear it and it hit someone,” Flanders said.

The other Wildcats who converted on penalty kicks before Petrino put the game away were Drew Crawford, Sobowale, Liam Fleming, Bryant Jackson, Hoffman and Logan Merry.

This is the first region title for the Wildcats since winning three consecutive from 2009 to 2011.

“It’s been a long time coming,” Flanders said. “We probably should have won a few more in between, but I know I’ll enjoy my spring break a lot more now.”

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