The Lincolnton Wolves are still undefeated. They outlasted Lincoln Charter on Monday evening for their 3rd win in the NCHSAA 2A playoffs, their 19th overall, and will now host #3 seed Salisbury on Thursday after the Hornets downed Monroe 2-0 Monday.
Even the best occasionally make a mistake. That was the case for the Wolves, and it could have been costly. Coach Brad Bagan called it a miscommuncation between the goalkeeper and center back. What should have been a quick pickup by the goalie turned into a goal for the Eagles when the ball was left in the top of the penalty box and Lincoln Charter pounced on the opportunity, giving them a 1-0 lead just five minutes into the game.
Five minutes later, the Eagles scored another goal and the unbeaten Wolves found themselves down 2-0.
It wasn't until 10 minutes left in the first half that Chuy "Baby Shark" Blanco-Tellez put the home team on the board taking a 30-yard diagonal from Zander Harrison to cut the lead to 2-1.
With five minutes left in the half, senior Kevin Calvo buried a 40-yard free kick, sending the ball over the goalkeeper and into the top corner of the back post.
With the score tied midway through the second half, it was Calvo who, on a rebound of a free kick. punched home what would become the winning goal.
Coach Bagan said "I told the guys we have to put our errors behind us. Celebrate that we survived a game that could have gone either way and admit that we, too, make mistakes; but we've got to have a short memory. This was a hard-fought match, and while you really hate to end the season for another Lincoln County team, we're glad to have kept ours alive."
The Wolves' 19th win of the season gets them into the fourth round, hosting Salisbury Thursday evening (Nov. 11th).
The Wolves improved their record to 19-0-3 for the season. Salisbury is now 20-2. One of their losses was to Forest Hills, a team the Wolves beat in the playoffs.
East Lincoln advanced, but North Lincoln lost in the NCHSAA 3A soccer playoffs Monday. The Mustangs beat the Enka Jets 5-3 to advance to the fourth round of the playoffs. East will now travel to Concord on Thursday (Nov. 11th) to play the Spiders, 2-0 winners over North Lincoln on Monday.
In other 3A action Monday, Hickory downed North Henderson 1-0, while Central Academy of Monroe ended the season for the Stuart Cramer Storm 3-1. Hickory will now play at home Thursday against Central Academy. The winner will play the winner of the East Lincoln @ Concord game for the western region championship next Tuesday (Nov. 16th).
In the 2A third round, #4 seed Shelby beat #5 seed North Forsyth 2-1. The Golden Lions will now host Community School of Davidson, third round winners over Pine Lake Prep by a 2-1 score, in the fourth round on Thursday. The winner will take on the winner of the Lincolnton vs Salisbury game for the western region championship next Tuesday (Nov. 16th).