As Lausanne's Varsity Soccer team headed to overtime with the score tied, they knew the state championship was on the line. That's when nerves set in, right?
Only Lausanne (19-1-0) had been in this situation before. Almost a year ago to the date, the Lynx defeated St. George's in the 109th minute of a double-overtime thriller to win their first soccer state championship.
But this year it was Battle Ground Academy (13-5-2), a school only about 40 miles away that brought enough fans to make it their own home game. The heat of May was pressing, too, guaranteeing cramping would be an issue for both teams late as the game dragged on. Despite their record, Lausanne, still recovering from a match the day before against a physical Boyd-Buchanan team, fell into the role of underdog.
Before the game, head coach Rog Lima told the players that if they played their game, he had faith the outcome would be a good one. But after a scoreless first half, at halftime he echoed those thoughts, telling them they were playing well enough to win but just had to calm their nerves and be patient.
Lausanne had over two times as many shots as BGA (22-10). More than double the number of shots on goal (10-4). The shots were just high or just wide. With each one, Lima's voice echoed across the field.
"Great effort..take your time...you're going to have your moment!" Lima shouted. Regulation time ran out, and they headed to overtime. Just like the year before.
Legs began cramping up. Lucas Drummond '18 helped a fallen opponent stretch their calf muscle. Just like the year before.
Finally, Vinny Garcia '21 scored off a pass from Kelvin Borges that finally broke the tie in the first 10 minute overtime.
From there, the Lausanne defense held off late charges by the Wildcats and as the final horn sounded, the Lausanne soccer team was once again in familiar territory: receiving the state championship trophy and retaining the title as the best Division II-A soccer team in the state of Tennessee.
For those in attendance or watching online, it was also another opportunity to Witness Lynx History as Lausanne is now the only Shelby County school to win state titles in football and soccer in back-to-back seasons.
Way to go, Lynx. Just like the year before.
Photo courtesy of Charles Pulliam.