Varsity Soccer Playoffs 2011
After an intense, physical match against Irving High School, the Men’s Varsity Soccer team ended March 29 with the history-making victory of their first 5A playoff game. The Broncos’ offense started early with a corner kick which Andrew Bach headed into the net with 33 minutes left in the first half. After the goal, things started to heat up in the game after the referee kept making bad calls. This resulted in the first two of eight total yellow cards of the night when Nathaniel Martinez accidentally kicked an Irving player in the face while trying to pass the ball over him, causing him to fall to the ground and hold his head, faking the intensity of his injury.
I constantly went back and forth between taking pictures, and screaming in support for the boys. The Irving Tigers kept speaking back and forth with each other, screaming in Spanish to desperately make a goal. I paid attention to their yells and kept my eye on the ball through my lens.
When the whistle blew ending the half, both teams came off the field knowing they needed to play harder. Taking a break from the excitement, I went up to the fans and they all talked about how great the game began.
Forty minutes went back up on the clock, and the expressions of Coach Cottrell and his team showed pure determination for their quest for the Area championships. The Varsity girls’ soccer team, who were there for support, seemed to scream more than the parents, as calls by the referee made them furious. It seemed as if every 10 minutes, another yellow card would fly into the air. Legacy players keep their cool and Blake Brown showed his immense skills of flawless saves throughout the night.
Will Davis, the sports editor, filmed the game and talked to me about how anxious it made him because there remained 15 minutes left and only one point ahead. Not long after this, Martinez again received the opportunity to score and succeeded in making another goal.
However, with less than 5 minutes left, the Irving Tigers made it past our defense leaving the scoreboard to read 2-1. The anticipation kept everyone on their feet, wishing for the Broncos to keep control of the ball as the clock ticked.
Ten seconds were left and Josh Rodriguez sprinted alongside Martinez to possibly score yet another goal. As soon as they reach the forty yard, Irving’s keeper took a cheap shot and tackled Rodriquez, causing him to fall to the ground, later resulting in four stitches. Coach Cottrell ran to the field with the team after him, all yelling at the referee to give him a red card. Commotion broke out as both teams huddled toward the center and a struggle between the men began. The Irving Tigers started to get really physical and Legacy reacted calmly toward the violence. The police and AP’s broke up the chaos that left everybody standing on their feet.
When everything settled down and Irving left the field, Coach Cottrell talked to the Legacy Men afterwards and expressed how proud he was of them. The words that stood out the most were, “At the end of the day, it’s not about wins or losses, but who has the better sportsmanship.” Legacy did indeed have the best sportsmanship and class in the most physical and intense game of the entire season. That victory left the men to their next opponet, Keller, in which they lost to for area championship title in Birdville.