May River’s season was down to its final three minutes, and the Sharks seemed destined to end with a playoff loss to Bishop England for the third consecutive year.
Then Joel Fleek happened.
Fleek scored the equalizer with less than three minutes left in regulation, then added the game-winner in the final minute to lift the Sharks to a thrilling 3-2 win, earning the Sharks a trip to the Class 3A state championship game Saturday in Columbia.
Mikey Chappelear opened the scoring for May River in the 22nd minute, but the Bishops answered in the 33rd minute to tie it at 1 at halftime.
The Bishops grabbed the lead in the 49th minute and held the Sharks at bay until Fleek’s back-to-back goals in the final minutes.
“One thing we’ve been talking about all season is our mental focus and playing a full game, no matter what, and working to get the result,” Sharks coach Misael Garzón said. “The boys earned a huge win tonight and persevered against a very good opponent. I’m super proud of what they’ve accomplished and excited to represent May River on Saturday in the state championship.”
The Sharks (19-3-1) will face Indian Land for the state championship at 2:30 p.m. Saturday at Irmo High School.