SHORT END OF STICK
Holly Springs eliminated Jordan 10-8 and advanced to the second round of the state playoffs Friday after holding off a second-half surge by the Falcons.
Mason Boone, Will Forrestal and Philip Arnold each scored a pair of goals for the winning Golden Hawks.
Jordan got a two goals from Thomas Schmidt, including one eight seconds into the fourth quarter that brought the Falcons within one of the Golden Hawks.
“How you like that, Holly Springs?” a fan chirped from the stands.
Jordan’s Jesse Melton landed a shot that made it an 8-8 game with 9:39 to play.
Forrestal answered 11 seconds later before Jordan’s Owen Perrien tied it with 7:21 left to play.
Holly Springs would score two more goals before getting into a game of keep-away, milking the last few minutes off the clock.
The Golden Hawks jumped on the Falcons and were up 6-2 at halftime. Whatever Jordan coach Jamie Sliwa said during the break apparently registered with his team.
“It was basically just the honest truth that we needed to play harder,” Sliwa said. “We came out and didn’t do what we’ve been doing the last few games and just didn’t come out as aggressive as we wanted. Turned it on in the second half, just ran out of time.”
Holly Springs coach Doug Greenberg said Jordan was a different squad in the second half.
“I think they got to a point where they had to wake up and start moving the ball better, and they didn’t hesitate on finishing. I think they hesitated early on,” Greenberg said. “We gave them a little window to get some confidence, and they took advantage of it.”
The Falcons forced the issue in the second half, Holly Springs’ Evan Allen said.
“They came out and got momentum right away,” Allen said. “I think their scoring a goal eight seconds into the (second) half was big, and then they turned around and did the same thing at the beginning of the fourth quarter. So I think they did a good job of gaining momentum in places where they needed it.”
The Falcons had to find a way around the Golden Hawks’ defensive scheme.
“They were locking off two of our guys, which was throwing our offense off,” Sliwa said. “We changed what we were doing in the second half, which, I think, helped us a lot better. I’ve got to give them credit, though. They locked off two of our best players, and everybody else didn’t react the way that we thought. But, hey, we made the adjustments, just, again, it didn’t turned out the way we’d hoped.”
Perrien and Melton each scored three goals for Jordan.
Few folks at the beginning of the season gave Jordan any hope of accomplishing much since the Falcons had lost 16 seniors, Sliwa said. But the Jordan seniors who did return were pillars, Sliwa said.
“Not a lot of people were expecting us to necessarily make the playoffs, let alone win as many as we did, and those seniors really did a great job day in and day out getting everybody ready,” Sliwa said.
Holly Springs 10, Jordan 8
Holly Springs 3 3 1 3—10
Jordan 2 0 3 3—8
11:29 Taylor Ferguson (HS)
9:42 Philip Arnold (HS)
8:01 Owen Perrien (J)
4:26 Jesse Melton (J)
1:33 Mason Boone (HS)
11:03 Alex Waters (HS)
5:13 Arnold, from Ferguson (HS)
3:01 Will Forrestal (HS)
11:51 Thomas Schmidt (J)
6:20 Melton, from Scott Upchurch (J)
4:17 Perrien (J)
4:02 Scott Johnson (HS)
11:52 Schmidt (J)
9:39 Melton, from Perrien (J)
9:28 Forrestal (HS)
7:21 Perrien, from Melton (J)
5:08 Evan Allen (HS)
3:47 Boone (HS)
Shots — Holly Springs 24, Jordan 18. Saves — Holly Springs, Mitch Daratony 4; Jordan, Keegan Barnes 11. Records — Holly Springs 12-5, Jordan 13-3.