Morgan City High School's Helder Hernandez works against an Archbishop Hannan player during the teams' Division III first-round soccer match in Covington Saturday. Morgan City fell 5-4.
MCHS drops heartbreaker to Hannan 5-4
A furious second-half comeback by the Morgan City Tigers proved all for naught as Archbishop Hannan scored a goal late in the teams’ Division III first-round playoff contest for a 5-4 victory.
While Morgan City trailed 3-1 at halftime, the Tigers scored two three second-half goals, including one by Denis Benitz-Lopez to tie the game a 4 around the 65th minute of play.
However, Archbishop Hannan responded with 4:40 remaining in the contest with a goal by Henry Nader for a 5-4 victory.
“They outworked us,” Hannan Coach Trey Labat said Saturday. “They were first to every ball, and to be honest, they deserved to win. We deserve to be out of the playoffs right now. The fact that we’re going to be playing next week comes down a lucky bounce here or there. My team, I thought, played extremely poorly. We let them back in the game due to a lack of effort, a lack of composure.
“To be honest with you, we looked like we were scared,” Labat said. “We played like scared little boys today instead of Hannan Hawks soccer players, so a lot of credit to Morgan City. They got some good players, and to be honest with you, they deserve to be playing Parkview Baptist next week, not us.”
Morgan City’s second-half comeback featured a goal less than seven minutes into the second half to cut Hannan’s deficit to 3-2.
While Hannan countered with a goal nearly six minutes later by Logan Forjet, Morgan City came back with two more goals, one by Benitz-Lopez after he chased down a long pass approximately three minutes later to cut Hannan’s lead to 4-3 and again around the 65th minute after Benitz-Lopez collided with the goalie and knocked the ball in.
“No disrespect to them, but I still think we were a better team,” Morgan City Coach Trevor Patterson said. “They’re ranked No. 11. That doesn’t mean everything all the time because they’re higher.”
Patterson said he told his team in the second half that they would have to raise their intensity.
“We did, but when you’re pushing more (people) up and more up, that leaves less (people) in the back and the goals they have … were just them being in the right place at the right time, not because they were a better team,” Patterson said.
In the first half, Hannan took little time to get on the scoreboard as Victor Harvey ran down a pass from a teammate and scored for a 1-0 Hannan lead less than four minutes into the contest.
Hannan scored two more goals within approximately two minutes, the second one by Gavin Keim via a free kick from 30-plus yards.
Additional reporting by Nola.com