Broughton, Middle Creek, Wilmington Laney and New Hanover advanced to the quarterfinals of the N. C. High School Athletic Association 4A boys’ soccer tournament on Wednesday night.
Cardinal Gibbons and Chapel Hill won their 3A matches, while Carrboro and Raleigh Charter made the fourth round in the 2A and 1A classifications, respectively.
“To see in three years, where a class of seniors can bring a team from one win to the third round of the playoffs – we can be disappointed tonight, but if you look at the big picture it’s amazing where Holly Springs soccer has gone,” Hawks coach Brian Miller said.
The win moves the Bucs to a fourth-round date at crosstown rival New Hanover (20-6), which ousted Green Hope 3-0 after losing to the Falcons the past two years.
“They’re a well-coached team who played a great game,” Green Hope coach Chip Bunn said. “They limited our chances and got us frustrated. We never found our rhythm.
“We made some adjustments at the half, trying to play more direct, and I thought it was working. We talked about trying to keep them from scoring on set pieces, but that’s where their first two goals came from.”
Bunn praised his seniors.
“These seniors have been through a lot of transition,” he said. “They’ve had four coaches in four years and they haven’t let it affect them on the field.”
The other 4A fourth round games in the East will be Middle Creek (13-8-5) at Broughton (18-1-2).
Middle Creek (the No. 23 seed) knocked off Northern Durham 2-1. The Knights (14-6-1) scored in the final minute against the Mustangs, who finished fifth during the Southwest Wake conference regular season.
“We’re playing pretty well right now,” Middle Creek coach Ed Wasdell said. “Just team effort. I guess we’re road warriors.”
The Mustangs’ Tyler Conrad scored in the 13th minute, heading in a throw-in from Chris Wallace. Caleb O’Brien scored in the 73rd for a 2-0 lead. Jesus Rodriguez scored in the final minute for Northern Durham.
Broughton (18-1-2) topped Apex 3-1. The Cougars finished 15-6-2.
Cardinal Gibbons (22-2-1) jumped on Richlands early in a 5-1 victory. The Crusaders will travel to Wilson Hunt, a 4-3 winner over Southern Lee.
Kee later fed Marc Rovner for an insurance goal with 9:02 left in the game.
Carrboro (21-2-1) will play Franklinton, a 2-1 overtime winner over Southwest Onslow. Washington plays at Kill Devil Hills First Flight in another fourth round game.
East Carteret (14-2) plays at Wallace-Rose Hill (23-1), a 10-3 winner over Franklin Academy, in another 1A quarterfinal.