High school soccer: Brighton beats Olympus in overtime in 5A second round
By Tommy Bailey
After a tight back and forth affair in 5A playoff matchup that featured two teams from Region 6, it was the Brighton Bengals who came out victorious, defeating the Olympus Titans 3-2 in overtime.
The game-winner came from sophomore Justin Fahrenkrog.
“The first 20 minutes or so I thought we were sleeping,” Brighton head coach Brett Rosen said. “After that I thought we pulled it together and played with more energy.
“Any time you play a region opponent in the playoffs it’s going to be a battle, and today was a battle. We’re just happy to come out on top because Olympus is a great team.”
It took a while for both teams to settle into the game, with Olympus striking first midway through the first half when defender Parker Stebbing found Clayton Numbers in the middle of the box, and Numbers proceeded to calmly drill the ball past the Bengals goalkeeper for the first score of the game.
Brighton leveled it with 11 minutes in the half thanks to a goal from Elias Fairbourn at close range.
The score remained tied at the half, but Olympus came out it the second half on the front foot and with the majority of the momentum.
Five minutes into the second half, the Titans once again took the lead on a goal from Christian Kercher thanks to a tidy assist from Jiyitharan Arumugarasa.
Brighton once again tied the score with 22 minutes left when Kaden Wilson chipped Olympus keeper Yien Rout, and the Bengals carried the momentum into overtime.
Two minutes into the extra session, Rout bobbled a routine save, and an alert Fahrenkrog jumped at the loose ball and tucked into the back of the net for the game-winning goal.
“We knew that if we went forward with confidence and just went at the goal that something would go in,” Rosen said.
“This is our third overtime game of the year, so we’ve been here and understand it. Overtime in high school is about who wants it, and these guys clearly wanted it.”
The Bengals will now move on to play their heated rival Alta, a matchup that Rosen is very much looking forward to.
“Brighton and Alta is the best rivalry in soccer,” he said. “Our team secretly wanted that. I’ve been secretly trying to keep them from looking forward to it because I knew we wouldn’t get past this game if they did.
“That’s a game that’s been missing for several years, so any time Brighton and Alta can get together it’s going to be fun.”