A tough loss put Lafayette in a position where it would have to play a No. 1 seed in the first round of the boys’ 11th Region soccer tournamnet. Another tough loss ended its season Tuesday night.
The Generals dropped a 4-3 shootout round to Madison Central after 90 minutes of play, officially losing 2-1 Tuesday night at Bryan Station. Madison Central advanced to the 11th Region semifinals for the third consecutive season, where it will meet Woodford County for a finals berth Thursday night.
“It’s a great way to win one but it’s a terrible way to lose one,” Indians Coach Ron Horn said of the game being decided on penalty kicks. “I’ve been on both ends of it.”
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Lafayette was unable to extend one of the program’s best seasons in the last two decades after taking an early 1-0 lead on an Evan Bunch goal in the first half. Madison Central’s Hunter Jackson equalizer came in the 49th minute. The teams were knotted 1-1 after regulation and two five-minute overtime periods.
Generals Coach Chris Grimm thought his team could have capitalized on opportunities in the first half to take a larger lead into the break.
“I thought we played really well in the first half, especially defensively,” Grimm said. “We had some really golden opportunities to score a few more goals. I thought we could have had two or three goals at halftime.”
Lafayette-Madison Central was the only matchup of ranked teams in the tournament’s first round. The No. 9 Generals drew the No. 17 Indians, a one seed, after falling in overtime to Paul Laurence Dunbar in the 43rd District championship game.
“It stunk to drew them for the first game but that’s the way it goes,” Grimm said. “You have to beat all these teams eventually if you want to get through.”
Grimm knows what it’s like to have a season end the way his players’ did on Tuesday. The final play of his own high school career at Manual was a missed PK.
“It’s gonna take time to move past it and get over it,” Grimm said. “But eventually you look back at the season the guys had and it was a great season. They have a lot to be proud of and they represented the school so well.
“And the biggest thing for me that I’m very happy about is they did it as a team. We weren’t relying on one guy to score 30 goals or anything like that. It was a true team effort.”
Madison Central 2, Lafayette 1 (SO)
G—MC: Jackson (49’). L: Bunch (15’).
GK—MC: Roberts. L: Medina.
Records: Madison Central 16-4-3, Lafayette 16-6-1.