William Monroe High Schools boys soccer team battled visiting Turner Ashby High School in their first home game of the season last Tuesday, ending in a tie.
The Dragons, who fell to Turner Ashby on the road 3-2 on March 19, bounced back from a one-point deficit in the last four minutes of the game to end their non-district match up 2-2.
The Knights came out strong in the first half, with sophomore Maneis Kowa scoring the first goal of the night just six minutes into the game. Monroe’s Jacob Bridgwater responded with a little more than 28 minutes left in the first, but the goal was no good after referees called offside on the Dragons.
Monroe was able to redeem itself after junior Brian Dunn drove one in with less than 14 minutes to go until the end of the first. Tied up 1-1 going into the half, Monroe head coach Matt Dunn told his team, “you can’t back down now.”
“The first half we just couldn’t connect the passes,” Dunn said. “We tend to get a little bit lazy, especially when we score and they come right back at us and score again, so we’ve got to keep the pressure up. I knew it’d be a better game tonight.”
In the second half, the team did just that – connecting more passes and keeping the pressure on Turner Ashby.
Kowa scored again for the Knights early in the second half, putting Monroe down by 1. But with four minutes left to play, Dragon senior Tim Cochran found himself in the position to equalize the score.
Cochran earned a free kick off a foul, and connected with the net to end Monroe’s shortfall.
“It was just a great experience to be able to take that last penalty kick right at the end to tie up the game,” Cochran said. “I needed to take the opportunity to make sure that my team got the tie.”
As the clock ticked to the end of the game, Turner Ashby attempted two more shots including their own free kick. Goalkeeper Evan Wagner stopped both attempts, ending the March 26 game 2-2.
“We all played hard tonight,” Cochran said. “It was a good team experience, and we’re definitely getting ready for the rest of the season and going into playoffs.”
William Monroe (1-2-1) will face Madison County High School at home on Tuesday, April 9 at 7 p.m.