Keiley Good admitted that the adrenaline kicked in after Beaufort Academy gave up the first one. But when her Eagles took the field again for the second half, the extraordinary eighth-grader willed it upon herself to make the difference and bring home a historic state championship.
The Eagles scored three straight goals in the second half of the SCISA 1A/2A state title game to down crosstown rival Holy Trinity 3-1 in a thrilling all-Lowco battle.
“The feeling was amazing,” Good said on the Lowco FC podcast. “Right at the moment, too, it was the best feeling ever. We went down 1-0 and we came back, it was an amazing game.”
After cruising past Patrick Henry Academy 5-1 to reach the state final, the Eagles weren’t accustomed to being behind at the midway point. But the break after the whistle blew was exactly what they needed to get back on track.
“Everyone was kinda freaking out in the last 10 minutes of the first half,” Good said. “Halftime kinda cooled us down and we got excited and ready and then we just played really well. Lots of people were kinda trying to move positions around to try to get our heads back in the game, but we just ended up staying with the plan that we originally do, what we always do. And I think that helped best.”
And the switch flipped quickly. The Eagles got back to the game they know well, and the goals came in bunches. With their teammates hyping each other up from the sidelines, Ella Cooler, Madi McDougall, and Good herself found the back of the net to build a lead they would not relinquish. Scoring was contagious, and the Eagles’ fast-strike and well-oiled offensive attack quickly soared above the Mighty Lions’.
With high-flying energy, Beaufort Academy amped up its defense over the final minutes and tracked down any loose ball or possible Holy Trinity attack. And then, the moment that made it all worthwhile arrived. The final whistle sounded, and a resilient group of teammates came together and embraced one another — as champions. It was Good’s first high school title and one that she’ll remember for a lifetime.
“I mean everything kinda went by so quickly, but the feeling when that whistle blew was the best feeling ever,” Good said. “I’ve never won a state championship so I’ve never experienced that, but it was the best I could ever imagine.”
But the young standout is already hungry for more. In June, she’ll be right back at it competing with her club team for a state championship. And she’s also got Olympic Development Program tryouts and several ID camps on tap this summer. She’s a budding star in the Lowco scene and already has a ring to her name. It could be the first of many as a Beaufort Academy Eagle.
“I think we should do our best next year,” Good said. “We’re losing so many good players, but I think we can still do our thing with the rest of the team that’s coming back and I think we can get it done again next year and the next few years.”
By Wes Kerr / LowcoSports.com
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