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Biglerville advances in District 3 boys soccer

It's onward and upward for Biglerville as the host Canners knocked off Boiling Springs, 2-1, in the quarterfinals of the District 3 Class 2A boys soccer tournament Saturday morning at Musselman Stadium.

The victory sends Biglerville (17-2-1) to the semifinals against Lancaster Mennonite on Tuesday at a site and time to be announced.

The Canners trailed 1-0 after Benny Cole scored off an assist from Sam Niles with 21:27 left in the opening half. The goal came off a through ball from Niles that Cole gathered, and he blazed a shot near post from the left that beat Canner keeper Noah Mattson.

But the deficit didn't last long, as the Canners leveled things just 34 seconds later. Bubblers netminder Drew Fink denied Ezequiel Linares' header, but the ball squirted free and Jared Dotson-Jones was there for the rebound and his 10th goal of the campaign.

"We played the right ball to the guy making the right run for us to score and to give a goal right back is frustrating," Boiling Springs coach Matt Brenner said. "We had seized the momentum and then gave it right back to them."

Biglerville pushed its nose in front five minutes later when Dotson-Jones setup Christian Saldivar for a marker at the 15:02 mark of the first half. Dotson-Jones' pass came from center to right and Saldivar's shot deflected off of Fink into the right side of the net.

"We're used to being ahead, so there was urgency to even it up as quick as we could," Dotson-Jones said. "I knew that we needed to score quickly because I didn't want to see our confidence drop."

Boiling Springs (10-7-2) occasionally had the upper hand in the second half, when play was pretty evenly contested.

The Bubblers had two opportunities to even the match, but came up empty on both. The first was a shot by Cole off a corner from Ryan Fisher at 16:42 that was denied by Mattson. Then Cole had a header try with 6:33 to go that went wide right.

"They put a lot of pressure on us, especially in the second half," Biglerville coach Jebb Nelson said. "They really put us on the defensive at times."

Biglerville held a 6-5 edge in shots on goal, while Boiling Springs had an 8-3 advantage in corners.

"I felt that we had more quality chances, but we couldn't finish," Brenner said. "We had balls on the ground in the box that have to be put in. We were throwing everything we had at them in the second half, but they have a great keeper, and they seem to always have a great keeper, and he's only a freshman."

Saturday was Biglerville's first match since losing to Susquehannock in the YAIAA tournament semifinals two weeks ago.

"We got a lot of time to rest with the long break between games," Nelson said. "But we got a lot more injuries with pulled muscles and such than we were getting during games. It's hard to stay sharp when you aren't playing games and just going against each other in practice."