It was Chris Cho to the rescue for David Lipscomb.
Cho’s goal in the final minute of the game enabled the Mustangs to edge regular season champ M.L. King 1-0 for the District 9-A/AA soccer championship Thursday night at Trevecca Nazarene.
Cho, a 5-foot-6 forward, found himself in front of the net and, amid a mad scramble, he nudged the ball into the goal to lift Lipscomb (13-4-2) to perhaps its most exciting win of the season.
“I got positioned in the front of the net, I bumped into someone, and suddenly the ball went off me into the net,” Cho said after being congratulated by teammates. “I never really saw it go in. But I’m glad it did and I could help my team.”
Lipscomb beat MLK 3-1 earlier in the season, but finished third in the standings. Along with a 2-1 win over Christ Presbyterian Academy on Tuesday, the Mustangs beat the top two seeds in the tournament.
“We have progressed as a team, and I know we will go to state,”
The defensive struggle featured very few offensive chances for both teams, and Lipscomb goalie Clay Crothers was equal to the ones he faced.
“I have to hand it to my defenders,” Crothers, one of six seniors, said. “They made it really hard for their forwards to get a good open shot at the net. M.L. King has a great team, and we were very fortunate to win. It was a pretty lucky goal.’’
Added David Lipscomb coach Nathan Proffitt: “It was a great game. We’ve had some really good, physical games with MLK. I have a great deal of respect for John [Alford, the Royals coach] and the job they do there. Somehow, the ball found its way into the net, and we got a win. It will be great to get to play at home [in the region].”
Lipscomb will play the loser of the Cheatham County-White House game Tuesday at the Lipscomb University field in the Region 5-A/AA semifinals. MLK will travel to face the winner of that match.
“It was a rough battle, and they were able to get the ball in the net at the end, and we didn’t,” Alford said. “We had a earlier game like that against Franklin where they scored in the last minute to tie us.”
• More soccer: The DII-AA Regional tournament opens Friday. Brentwood Academy visits Ryan at 6 p.m., Pope JP II travels to Montgomery Bell Academy at 7 p.m. On Saturday, Ensworth travels to Briarcrest and St. Benedict is at Battle Ground Academy.
In DII-A at Knoxville Webb, Franklin Road Academy meets Webb at 1 p.m., followed by Ezell-Harding and University School of Nashville play at 4 p.m. The third place game is 10 a.m. Saturday followed by the championship game at 1 p.m.
• Baseball: After winning another District 12-AAA championship, Overton (21-10) will host Brentwood High Monday night at 7 at the Bobcats field in the Region 6-AAA semifinals. Hunters Lane will visit Franklin in the other semis.
“We’re pretty young and we were struggling early on,” coach Mike Morrison said. “But lately, we’ve played much better.”
A lot of that has to do with senior ace Grant Sharp (8-0) who has pitched two shutouts and has allowed only one run in his last three outings.
“He’s not only an outstanding pitcher, he helps us in so many other ways,” Morrison said. “He played a little bit of everything for us – third base, outfield, first base, shortstop.”
• Softball: After David Lipscomb rallied for an 11-7 win over MLK to win the District 10-A/AA tournament softball title, the Mustangs will host White House in the Region 5-A/AA semifinals Monday. MLK will visit Goodpasture.