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GLEN CARBON - Luke DeWilde scored with the last shot in a penalty kick shootout to give Columbia a 2-1 win after their IHSA Class 1A regional final against host Father McGivney Catholic ended in a 1-1 draw in a game concluded Thursday at Bouse Road.
The Eagles won a penalty kick shoot-out with four successful kicks to the Griffins three to take a 2-1 win over the Griffins.
The Eagles had taken the lead in regulation on a 64th-minute goal by DeWilde off a great cross by Hayes Van Bruesegen to make it 1-0 for Columbia. The lead lasted until the 78th minute when striker Tyler Ahiring was brought down by the Eagles in the box for a Griffins' penalty kick. Spencer Martin converted the spot kick to equalize for McGivney at 1-1. The gathering darkness forced the game to be suspended by the officials until the next day when 20 minutes of extra time would be played.
The Griffins had the better of the play in extra time, but couldn't get a shot past Eagles' keeper Brady Hemminghaus. McGivney keeper Patrick Gierer was equally impressive in extra time, keeping Columbia off the score sheet as neither team scored, setting up the penalty shootout.
In the shootout, Spencer Sundberg, Martin and Nate MacLaughlin all scored for the Griffins, with Kane Riebeling, Liam Bivins and Owen Worcester connected for the Eagles. Hemminghaus made a big save in the fifth round of the shootout, setting up DeWilds's heroics, firing in a low shot to the left of Gierer into the net to give Columbia the 2-1 win.
The Griffins end their season 12-9-2, while the Eagles are now 14-3-4 and move on to the Murphysboro sectional, where the Eagles will play Waterloo Gibault Catholic, a 3-2 winner over Metropolis Massac County in the Carlyle regional final, Saturday afternoon in the second semifinal at 1 p.m. The winner will play in the sectional final match against either the host Red Devils or Marquette Catholic next Wednesday at 7 p.m.
Columbia head boys soccer coach Jamey Bridges said it was fortunate his club could come back and play McGivney again on Thursday and he knew it was a new day for his squad.
"We knew this would be a tough game," he said of the matchup against McGivney. "We prepare for PKs all year, so we were prepared today. I am the coach that has the boys practice PKs frequently. I was very proud of our kids for taking the regional title."
The coach said goalie Brady Hemminghaus was unbelievable.
"He is a very teachable kid and for him to save two at the end was unbelievable," he added.
Father McGivney Catholic head boys soccer coach Matt McVicar said that all season long his team believed they could win every match and stayed in each confrontation, including the regional match against Columbia.
"Their belief they could win carried through the year," he said. "I am so proud of their tenacity and how they played against Columbia. Hats off to Columbia, they are a tough team."
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