Patriots stun West Jessamine in penalty kicks

Published 11:03 pm Wednesday, October 17, 2018

NICHOLASVILLE — Lincoln County executed its gameplan to a tee Wednesday.

The Patriots were underdogs in the quarterfinal matchup against West Jessamine. The No. 15 Colts had beaten No. 45 Lincoln 7-2 earlier this year, and the game was played in Nicholasville on West’s home turf.

But Lincoln executed its gameplan, and even after going down a goal, came back. The Patriots tied the game 1-1 in regulation and after two five-minute overtime periods kept the game even. In penalty kicks, Lincoln went 5-for-5 to seal the victory.

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Both goals were in the first half of regulation.

“We played really good defense. They scored first and went up 1-0, then we were able to score minutes later and were able to tie it up before the half,” Lincoln County head coach Lewis Cummins said. “The boys just held to our gameplan the whole game. It was just remarkable how they played with so much heart tonight.”

Lincoln’s goal came on a Trey Cummins free kick. The ball was bobbled by the West Jessamine keeper and Austin Wethington was the first to pounce and punch the ball into the net.

After regulation and with nerves flying, coach Cummins said he and his coaches had a simple message.

“To fight, for five more minutes. Give us five more minutes, keep our gameplan for five more minutes,” he said. “After that first overtime period, we said the same thing. Five minutes. Keep our mistakes to a minimum, and our defense played great. Carter Tillet in goal played unbelievable tonight. Then we were able to get to PKs.”

Coach Cummins said his team practiced penalty kicks before every district game, and they had a strategy.

“We had practiced it, actually before every district game we practiced it,” he said. “We actually put Trey in the goal on PKs, just with his length he’s a little bit longer than our goalie, and he’s had goalie experience before. He’s played goalie with some travel teams.”

Trey Cummins, Calvin Randall, Wethington, Carter Story and Hawk Randall each scored for Lincoln County. The penalty kicks were tied at four before Hawk Randall connected, then West’s fifth penalty bounced off of the frame of the goal.

Coach Cummins said the order of his players didn’t really matter — they all can take a spot kick.

“We just have a lot of trust in each one of them,” he said. “For some reason Trey just likes to go first, he just sets the tone for the rest of them and they all take PKs really solid.”

The Patriots won’t have long to celebrate Wednesday’s victory: Lincoln will play Southwestern (the Warriors beat Lincoln 4-3 in the regular season) Thursday in the 12th Region semifinals.

“We told them, this was a big game tonight but tomorrow’s an even bigger game,” coach Cummins said. “We’ll enjoy the win tonight but tomorrow we’ve got to turn our focus to Southwestern. We’ll get a gameplan ready and see what we can do.”