RIVERSIDE, Mo. — Park Hill South kept up the dramatics all week to come away with the home tournament title.
Tied 1-1 after regulation in the Panther Classic championship game, Park Hill South survived in penalty kicks against North Kansas City on Thursday, Oct. 5 at Park Hill District Soccer Complex. Nate Newton, Moti Sarbessa, Carson Lindsey and Zach Nay all converted shots from the spot in the tiebreaker round, while junior goalkeeper Mark Allred made one key save.
Park Hill South won its two pool games by scores of 3-2 in overtime before ending up in the shootout with North Kansas City.
“Tonight was a tough game, but I feel like the other two games we should have put away in regulation,” Park Hill South coach Chris Farmer said. “From that standpoint, it’s frustrating, but then I also tell them it’s hard to get mad at you when you keep pulling it off in overtime, so from that standpoint it builds character when you get those gritty wins like that. Sometimes it’s good for the team morale.”
Park Hill South took the initial lead in all three games, including in the championship.
Nay, a senior defender, headed home a corner from Austin Gates in the 28th minute to make it 1-0 for the Panthers. North Kansas City leveled out of the same situation just four minutes later, and the score held with limited chances for both teams in the remainder of regulation.
Park Hill South held strong despite being unable to score the winner and used the momentum in the shootout.
Both teams made their first two penalty kicks with Allred making his save in the third round. Park Hill South’s Isaiah McGilchrist then hit the crossbar on his attempt to keep it tied 2-2, but North Kansas City also hit the crossbar on its fourth round attempt.
Lindsey and Nay then converted to return the Panther Classic title to the home team.
“I think we stepped it up, and I think (North Kansas City) got a little tired too, but you could definitely feel a kind of switch in momentum,” Farmer said. “I think they kind of feel the urgency of the situation. It’s their tournament, and we didn’t win it last year. It’s our home turf, so I think they kind of wanted it and this group of seniors; they’re hungry.”
Park Hill South 3, Raymore-Peculiar 2
Jacob Garza converted the overtime winner Wednesday, Oct. 4 — the sophomore midfielder’s second golden goal in a span of three days.
Park Hill South let a 2-0 lead slip away, giving up a goal late in the first half and early in the second half. Garza’s goal came in the 95th minute during the second half of sudden death overtime on a pass from Lindsey.
Austin Gates gave Park Hill South the lead in the fourth minute off a long sequence of passing. Ty Rouse, a sophomore left back, sent in the cross with the seventh pass of the sequence. Isaac Henn made it 2-0 Panthers in the 32nd minute on a pass from right back Alzado Medina.
Park Hill South 2, Liberty North 1
The Panthers came up with an important Suburban Conference Red Division win Monday, Oct. 9 at Park Hill District Soccer Complex in Riverside, Mo.
Tripp Parsons gave Park Hill South the lead off of a Garza corner kick in the 24th minute, and McGilchrist’s goal from Henn in the 40th minute broke a 1-1 tie. Neither team scored in the second half.
Park Hill South improved to 6-1 in the Red Division after a fourth straight win in conference play. Liberty North won the previous matchup between the two on penalty kicks, ending the Panthers’ streak of 33 straight league wins.
In a four-team race, Park Hill South moved back into sole possession of first place in the Red Division with league games scheduled against Truman (Wednesday, Oct. 11) and St. Joseph Central (Thursday, Oct. 12) this week.