Since last years 5A state championship game, one goal has determined the winner of every Boise-Borah boys soccer game.
The 5A District Three championship game Wednesday night was no different.
Boise senior Henry Tipping scored the game-winner on a crazy play in the 88th minute: He threw the ball in from the sideline, and when a header rebounded back toward Tipping, he lined a deep shot just over Borah goalkeeper Armin Mandals fingertips near the far post.
Teammates rushed the 6-foot-4 defender in celebration of Boises 2-1 overtime victory at Timberline High the third district championship for the Braves in six seasons.
I took the throw-in and they headed it back out to me. The ball just landed perfect, Tipping said. So I figured Id just cross it far post and see what happens, and it ended up going in.
It was the first game-winning goal of Tippings career and capped a remarkable comeback for the Braves, who trailed 1-0 for the majority of regulation.
It felt amazing, Tipping said. Ive never had that kind of attention, just being able to put my team on my back and help them win like that. It was a great feeling.
Borah pounced early when sophomore forward Josh Szuch scored in the fourth minute on an assist from junior Conner Wood.
The Lions held the 1-0 lead until stoppage time in the second half.
Fearing their chance to claim the title was fading, the Braves kept the pressure on and finally broke through on senior forward Blaise Serungos goal on an assist from fellow senior Dane Crook.
They just worked through it. They kind of played a little lackluster for a while, said Boise coach Mike Darrow, whose team split its regular-season meetings with the Lions in a pair of 1-0 games.
A couple guys just decided to take it upon themselves to keep working, and we finally got a bounce to go our way.
Boise heads to next weeks state tournament as the defending champion and the districts No. 1 seed. The Braves (15-2-0) play 5A SIC foe Centennial (9-6-2) in a first-round matchup at 10 a.m. MDT Oct. 18 at Post Falls High.
Borah (12-2-3) last years state runner-up opens against District One-Two champion Post Falls (14-1-1).
Rocky Mountain (11-5-2) also qualified for state, which runs Oct. 18-20 in Coeur dAlene and Post Falls. Mountain View (10-6-2) faces Coeur dAlene (9-5-3) in a state play-in game at 3 p.m. Saturday at Middleton High.
5A GIRLS: TIMBERLINE 2, BOISE 1
A second-half knee injury to Timberline junior striker Hannah Velikoff sparked the Wolves come-from-behind victory Wednesday night at Mountain View High.
Boise junior midfielder Shea Brennan scored in the first minute on an assist from Sophia Kallas. The Braves held that lead until Velikoff went down.
Our girls started to play for her, Timberline coach Ross Schultz said. That inspired the girls, and they went and got the first goal.
Sophomore Allegra Weekes scored first and junior Mackenzie Gussenhoven scored the game-winner.
Timberline (10-3-4) earns the District Threes No. 1 seed at state. The Wolves, who have not lost a 5A SIC game this season, play Mountain View (9-5-4) in the first round at Lake City High in Coeur dAlene. Tournament play begins Oct. 18 and wraps up on Oct. 20 with the title game at 3 p.m. MDT at Coeur dAlene High.
Its just a blessing to be able to watch them play at this level and compete, Schultz said. With the parity in the league this year, it hasnt been easy. Even to win first place in conference and then first place at district is no easy achievement this year.
Boise (11-3-3) and Eagle (10-6-1) also earned state berths, while Centennial (7-8-3) plays Lake City (6-6-4) in a state play-in game at 1 p.m. Saturday at Middleton High for the right to face the District Five-Six champion in the first round.
Rachel Roberts: 377-6422,Twitter: @IDS_VarsityX