FORT MILL — Sporting a variety of hair styles for the playoffs, the No. 1-ranked Fort Mill High boys soccer team overtook eighth-ranked Wade Hampton 3-1 in the second round of the 3A state playoffs.
Some of the Jackets decided to shave their heads when the playoffs started, while some decided to leave a mohawk, and still others decided to keep a blade away from their scalp this time.
One of the guys said Lets go bald, said junior Jason Hirsch, who scored two goals. Hopefully by the end of the playoffs, everyone will have a crazy haircut.
One thing that has been crazy is the clip the Jackets have been winning. With their win over Wade Hampton, its eight in a row. Fort Mill will play Walhalla, a 3-0 winner over Greer, on Saturday in the third round.
Both teams came out looking even, trading the ball up and down the fieldwith neither one taking a real advantage early on.
Fort Mill started to gain some control about 15 minutes into the match, as it rattled off four shots on goal early, but only one needed to be saved by Generals keeper Grayson Aucoin.
The Jackets best opportunity to score early came on a throw in, as sophomore William Hughes bounced a shot off the top crossbar and just missed a goal.
Wade Hampton was able to get a couple shots off with about 20 minutes left in the first half, but freshman keeper Randall Phillips was able to save them. Phillips saved four shots in the first half.
With about nine minutes to go in the first half, Fort Mill set up its third corner kick of the half. Senior Kevin Fielden hit junior Jason Hirsch, who got caught up in traffic in the box but was able to put it into the goal.
Six minutes later, Hirsch would do it again on a breakaway down the right side of the field, sneaking it into the left side of the goal in a solo effort.
That was part of our game plan, to attack them out wide, said Fort Mill head coach Lloyd Chalker.
An aggressive Wade Hampton team came out in the second half and went right after Fort Mill. After several missed chances to score by Fort Mill, Generals senior Jhojan Benavides and other Wade Hampton players crowded the box to give Benavides the opportunity to score.
Fort Mill struggled to control the ball as well as it did in the first half, as the Generals defensive line kept the Jackets from getting too deep in the field.
After no luck up the middle, the Jackets went back to their bread and butter and with about 10 minutes left, as sophomore Austin Cassidy fed fellow sophomore Jonathan Cutrone down the left side of the field, where he then rocketed the ball into the upper left hand side of the goal to get some breathing room for Fort Mill.
They out played us in the second half for about 25 minutes, Chalker said. That third goal was key for us. Jonathan had an amazing shot.
For the final eight minutes after Cutrones goal, the Jackets seemed to breathe easier until the final whistle.
Fort Mill 3, Wade Hampton 1
FM Jason Hirsch, 31:37; assist Kevin Fielden
FM Hirsch, 37:54
WH Jhojan Benavides, 40:43
FM Jonathan Cutrone, 71:39; assist Austin Cassidy
Shots on goal: Wade Hampton 11, Fort Mill 12.
Corner kicks: Wade Hampton 3, Fort Mill 5.
Saves: Grayson Aucoin 9 (Wade Hampton), Randall Phillips 9 (Fort Mill).
Records: Wade Hampton 14-5-0, Fort Mill 22-3-0.