It was cold. It was wet. It was exciting. And at the end of Saturday’s Division 2 boys soccer district championship, host Sturgis held the hardware.
Scoreless after regulation and two overtimes, the Trojans (14-6-1) beat Mattawan on penalty kicks to advance to regionals. Carlos Maldonado, Juhnuel Rubio, Luis Munoz and Erik Patino each buried their shots in the net, and goalkeeper Isaac Montoya stopped the Wildcats’ second and third shots to seal the deal.
“He stepped it up today,” Sturgis coach Luis Olivares said of Montoya. “The team stepped it up again and did what they were supposed to do. The team remained focused and fought every single ball until the end. Communication was one of the keys to the success of this game. Mattawan is a good, skilled team with good leadership.”
Sturgis will play Dexter, which beat Jackson Northwest 3-1, in Tuesday’s regional semifinal in Jackson. Dexter is 17-4-1 this year.
Mattawan beat Sturgis 3-1 two weeks earlier when the Trojans struggled to get anything past future Western Michigan University goalkeeper Elijah Michaels, who made 13 saves Saturday. The Wildcats finished the season with a 12-5-4 record.