Boyd-Buchanan Wins Fourth Consecutive Region Soccer Title

Bucs Defeat Loudon 3-0 In 3-A/AA Final

Thursday, May 18, 2017 - by Jaime Barrett

With under nine minutes remaining in the Region 3-A/AA soccer championship match and Boyd-Buchanan clinging to a one-goal lead over Loudon, sophomore Hayes Wood delivered the strike that helped secure a fourth-consecutive title for the Bucs’ seniors.


After a yellow card on the Loudon keeper, Wood’s free kick from just outside the box found the back of the net and sent Boyd-Buchanan into celebration mode.

The celebration continued three minutes later, when Will Boyanton’s putback made it 3-0, and again when the final whistle blew on the Bucs’ victory.


“That was so huge,” Boyd-Buchanan coach Dustin Walker said of Wood’s goal. “Getting a 2-0 lead with eight minutes left, that just relieved so much pressure. I also think our defense really did a great job. We had to move new guys back there because of what happened on Tuesday, and they did a great job. I don’t feel like Loudon had a ton of dangerous opportunities. They have tons of dangerous players so you never feel good about a lead, but I thought our defense did an awesome job shutting down some of their opportunities.”


The Bucs were playing without senior co-captain Ross Wortman, who received a controversial red card in Tuesday’s region semifinal. Although Boyd-Buchanan missed both his leadership and his presence on defense, the Bucs’ coaches encouraged their players to use Wortman’s absence as an opportunity to grow even closer as a team.


“Coach Owens told the guys that now they truly get to know what it means to be a team,” Walker said. “When we say team here at Boyd, what we mean is family. One thing we really talked about is how family reacts when something happens to one of its members. That’s what we were trying to do tonight, and I’m just so happy for these guys to get this win. We saw a sense of family, but also a sense of fight from these guys. We know we’re not done yet, but we’re just super thankful that God gave us this.”


Boyd-Buchanan’s first goal almost seemed divinely inspired, as John Barber hit a ball that deflected off a Loudon player and went spinning out of the reach of the Redskins’ keeper and into the goal with 9:33 remaining in the first half.


Loudon stepped up its pressure for the second half, and had several dangerous scoring opportunities, including a free kick off the post, and another shot cleared off the line by a Boyd-Buchanan defender.


The Redskins continued pressing but could never connect, and Wood’s goal with 8:31 left to play made it 2-0. Boyanton gave the Bucs extra insurance when he finished in front of the goal with 5:46 on the clock to provide the 3-0 margin.


“Will got the putback, which is something we’ve been talking about,” Owens said. “They always try to have some awesome goal through the laces, and we’re always telling them, just toe it in, and that’s what he did.”


“They executed exactly the way we drew it up tonight. These aren’t guys who are just going to do whatever they want to do and try to force it in. We said, this is our game plan, let’s execute it, and because they’re a team, they just go out and do that. They don’t care who scores, and it’s fun to coach a team like that.”


The win gives Boyd-Buchanan its fourth region championship in a row, but the Bucs haven’t reached the state tournament since winning the Class A/AA title in 2010. They’ll have the opportunity to change that this weekend, when they host Region 4 runner-up Merrol Hyde in a state sectional match. The date and time of that match will be determined Friday after taking both schools’ graduation schedules into consideration.  


“I know our guys are proud of this, and they’re happy to get the win, but this group is not satisfied by that,” Walker said. “They’re thankful that the Lord has given us this opportunity, but they are yearning for more.”


(E-mail Jaime Barrett at jaimenbarrett@gmail.com)




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