A senior-laden back line and a next-man-up mentality fueled Hilton Head Christian Academy boys soccer to a hard-fought 1-0 win over visiting Spartanburg Day on Wednesday, sending the Eagles into the SCISA 2A state championship game.
The defensive line of seniors William Newton, Logan Harsta, Kent Camp, and Quinn Ryan denied the Griffins any quality scoring chances, and reserve Quin Monahan delivered the game-winning goal after coming on for injured region player of the year JP Peduzzi in the second half to punch the Eagles’ ticket to the title game.
After a scoreless first half, the Eagles began finding openings and putting pressure on the Spartanburg Day defense when Peduzzi went down hard and injured his shoulder. Less than 10 minutes later, the HHCA star’s replacement came up with the play of the game.
Cameron Strickland picked up the ball just inside the attacking half on the right flank and beat three defenders to get to the touch line. Strickland found a wide-open Monahan in front of the goal, and the reserve calmly slammed it home with his left foot.
Christian Becker and Josh Elam helped the Eagles control the midfield and control possession for much of the match, and the senior-dominant back line helped keeper Riley Shinn preserve the clean sheet and the one-goal margin.
The Eagles (7-2-2) will face Oakbrook Prep for the state title Saturday at Heathwood Hall in Columbia.