The White House Heritage boys soccer team held on to a one-goal lead for over 70 minutes Friday night to pick up their first win over cross-town rival White House since 2015.
Heritage’s Dylan Tate put his team on the scoreboard first in the opening minutes of the game. The 1-0 lead would hold for about an hour of game time. The Blue Devils struggled to maintain possession, especially in the first half.
In the 65th minute, White House earned a free kick from near the midfield line. Junior Bryson Harper launched the ball over the head of senior Heritage keeper Will Wilson to tie the game up.
Heritage head coach Mark Redferrin called it “a bomb” which may be the most accurate way to describe it. White House head coach Mark Lamberth simply said Harper has done it in practice.
While some teams may struggle to come back from a gut punch like that, the Patriots responded with a goal of their own in less than a minute.
Senior Jaxon Green crossed the ball into the box where, after bouncing around a few times, junior Jake Thornhill struck it into the goal to give the Patriots a 2-1 lead they would hold the rest of the way.
“It’s just how our kids responded to (the White House goal) that I’m really proud of,” Redferrin said. “They could have been frustrated and anxious and nervous, but they really responded well.”
Both Redferrin and his players were visibly excited after the win. It was “historic” for the players, and Redferrin hopes this can be a building block for things to come.
“These kids have never beaten White House, and so for their history, that’s the first time they’ve ever beaten White House,” Redferrin said. “It was a historic moment for our seniors that were here in eighth grade and have been a part of this program.
“The bigger picture for me is for them to really change our culture and the way we do things around here. Tonight was a benchmark moment for our soccer team and what I’m hoping will be a springboard for the rest of the season.”
Lamberth was disappointed with his team’s performance Friday night.
“We’re just not connecting on simple passes,” Lamberth said. “We’re making simple turnovers, and you can’t advance and get better at anything unless you have simple traps and simple passes. We just don’t have that right now.”
The Blue Devils are now 1-3, and Lamberth had some strong words to say about himself and his team after the loss.
“I feel like personally I’ve taken a perfectly good program and brought it to its knees, so I will fix that on Monday,” Lamberth said.