CARY, NC (WWAY)–The New Hanover boys soccer team battled from start to finish on Saturday night in the NCHSAA Class 3A State Championship game, but fell just short in their quest for the schools first soccer title. Weddington claimed the 2021 championship beating the Wildcats in overtime, 2-1.
Weddington got the scoring started in the 37th minute as Tucker Roberson found the back of the net off a New Hanover deflection. The score would remain 1-0 headed into the second half.
New Hanover had a rough start to the second half receiving a red card just four minutes. Down a man, the Wildcats wouldn’t give in. Junior standout Aidan Payne tied the match up at one apiece with a left footed shot with 22 minutes left in regulation.
The match would go to overtime tied at one. Weddington wasted no time in OT, they regained the lead just 18 seconds into the period as Jacob Wells capitalized off a rebound to punch in what would end up being the game winning goal.
“It was an unfortunate ending,” says New Hanover head coach TJ Rennie. “We hurt ourselves tonight some, obviously with the red card. But I think the goal in overtime right there was little bit unfortunate for us, a lot of times when a games that tight you know they turn on something like that.”
The Wildcats end their 2021 season with a (15-1) record and a state runner-up finish in Class 3A. New Hanover will return a ton of talent in the fall, the Wildcats graduate just four seniors on their 30 man roster.