The Mona Shores boys soccer team just doesn’t know when to quit.
Most of the time in high school soccer, a two-goal deficit leads to a loss, particularly against tough competition in the state tournament.
But the Sailors kept battling, scored three unanswered goals, and walked away with an exciting 3-2 victory to keep their season alive.
Senior Hayden Yaros scored two goals, including the game-winner on a penalty kick with about midway through the second half.
Mona Shores, now 15-3-1 on the season, advances to play Traverse City West in the regional championship game, which is also a state quarterfinal game, on Thursday at 7 p.m. at Grand Ledge.
“In the years I’ve been the varsity coach, I don’t know that we ever came back and won after being two goals down, and now we’ve done it twice this year,” said Mona Shores Coach Michael Apostle.
“We have some great leadership on this team, and the guys are very close. They’ve been playing together for a long time, and they knew they could do it.”
Holt scored on a penalty kick about 15 minutes into the game, then added a second goal about 12 minutes later.
Mona Shores’ Aiden Anderson took a pass from teammate Alex Eckerman and found the net with about seven minutes left in the first half, and the score was 2-1 at the break.
Yaros scored after a corner kick in the second half, with an assist from David McNiff, and the game was tied 2-2.
Yaros added his penalty kick goal about midway through the half, putting Mona Shores up 3-2.
Holt put the ball in the Mona Shores goal at the final buzzer, but the referees ruled that it did not go into the net on time, and the Sailors walked away with the victory.
“It was the right call,” Apostle said. “If they had had two more seconds they would have tied it. Time expired when the ball was about halfway there.”
Tyler Ross turned in a great performance in goal for the Sailors, substituting for starter Keegan DeKuiper.