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Fannett-Metal holds off Hyndman, 2-1, in boys soccer

The way the game started was not a best-case scenario for Fannett-Metal.

Hyndman scored a goal just 2:49 into their District 5 Class 1A quarterfinal boys soccer playoff on Saturday at Willow Hill.

But the Tigers got that goal back late in the first half, scored again in the second half and held off a furious Hornet attack in the closing minutes for a 2-1 victory.

No. 4 seed Fannett-Metal (13-6) will face rival McConnellsburg (16-2-1) in a semifinal game Tuesday, with site and time pending.

"Usually when we score one early like that, we get on a run," Hyndman coach Scott Stouffer said.

But the Tigers recovered after the Hornets' Noah Stair found himself with a wide-open lane to dribble the ball in toward the goal and get off an uncontested shot early in the first half.

F-M coach Greg Best said, "All year long we have a tendency to come out slow, and they went right down the field and scored."

The Tigers had the best of the possession and the wind at their backs in the first half, but the wind didn't really help them.

"We kept hitting it too long and put too many balls out of bounds," Best said.

But the Tigers tied it up when Mikell McGee found the net for the 45th time this season. With 5:25 left before halftime, he scooted around the right flank of Hyndman's defense, then zinged a low shot into the far side netting.

Stouffer said, "McGee is a helluva player, but he shouldn't have scored on us today."

With 28 minutes left in the game, F-M was awarded a free kick. Lucas Wingert sent a ball into the center of the box. Hornet keeper Spencer Messenger came out to play it, but the Tigers' Kyler Goshorn got there first, recovered the loose ball and put the ball into the goal from a tight angle.

Goshorn said, "I saw the ball come over the top of the defense and they called the goalie's name. I just tried to get in front of him to cut the ball off. I turned to see the goal and it looked like about a six-inch window. But I was able to hit it inside the keeper."

Over the final 15 or so minutes, Hyndman got a little more desperate and put more pressure on the Tiger defense. F-M center back Wyatt Thorne twice cleared a ball off his team's line, once in the second half when it was rolling free behind keeper Colby Adams (3 saves).

Thorne said, "We have a tendency sometimes to stay defensive (in situations like that). We kind of go from having possession to defending. But we marked well under the pressure."

"They moved a couple guys up to give them more speed, so we moved a couple back," Best said.

"I thought Goshorn played really well today - he really went to the ball. And (Mikayla) O'Donel had a good game, too. She ran through a lot of balls and didn't back down."

NOTES: Messenger made six saves for Hyndman (10-7-2), which outshot F-M, 10-8 ... The Tigers have won eight straight games.