HAMPTON — With less than six minutes remaining and the sun setting, everyone watching the unfolding stalemate between the Kecoughtan boys and Gloucester had to have been convinced that overtime was imminent. But as so often happens in soccer, that all changed in a blink.
Jordan White headed in a deflected corner kick with 5:35 showing on the game clock, and the Dukes held on for a 1-0 win Tuesday afternoon. The Warriors' winning streak in Peninsula District games ended at 12.
After both teams had missed opportunities in the second half, it was White's header that won it.
"The corner kick came in bad, but Matt (King) managed to get to it," White said. "He flicked the ball on — it kind of deflected off him, and I headed it in.
"Both teams were playing offense to offense. It was real aggressive the whole time. I was hoping we could put a few more in, but one makes the game."
It came on the fifth shot of the day for Gloucester (4-5, 3-1 PD). White nearly doubled the lead three minutes later, but his attempt sailed wide of the frame.
"In this kind of game, with it going back and forth, it comes down to one mistake," Kecoughtan coach Frank Hughes said. "Whether it's the goalkeeper or somebody not stepping up to head the ball out, that's all it takes in a game like this.
"We had our chances. We just didn't bury it. I think if we had played a little stronger in the box with our opportunities and put a couple away, it might have been a different story."
Kecoughtan (5-5, 3-1) put plenty of pressure on Gloucester the rest of the way, thanks largely to midfielder Cody Slezak. But the Dukes were able to hold on.
"It was a very hard-fought game by both teams," Gloucester coach Trey Sowers said. "It wasn't pretty by any means, but the heart was there. Sometimes the ball falls your way, and I think it did for us tonight.
"These kids needed this. They've been working hard, and hopefully they can progress and move forward from this."
GLOUCESTER 1, KECOUGHTAN 0
Halftime: 0-0. Goal: White. Assist: King. Shots: Gloucester 6, Kecoughtan 5. Saves: Gloucester, Loudermilk 3; Kecoughtan, Maier 2. Records: Gloucester 4-5, 3-1; Kecoughtan 5-5, 3-1.
Gloucester girls 3, Kecoughtan 0
The Dukes remained unbeaten and atop the district standings with a shutout win over the Warriors.
Gloucester (5-2-1, 3-0-1) got a pair of goals by sophomore forward Delaney Doyle to take a 2-0 lead at halftime. Katie Daugherty made it 3-0 with about 15 minutes remaining in the game.
liked the win but says his team still hasn't played a complete game yet.
"Every time we get out of our game state of mind, we create problems for ourselves," he said.
GLOUCESTER 3, KECOUGHTAN 0