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Wolverines finish season with 4-3 win over Central
Scot Sowards, 14, played tight defense vs. Cheyenne Central for Riverton High School at the Class 4-A state soccer tournament. Photo by Bruce Tippets

Wolverines consolation champs with Saturday 4-3 win over Central

May 20, 2012 - By Bruce Tippets, Sports Editor

By Bruce Tippets

Sports Editor

BIG HORN -- Freshman Tristan White scored on the final minute of overtime as Riverton High School knocked off Cheyenne Central 4-3 Saturday morning in dramatic fashion to win the Class 4-A state boys soccer consolation championship match.

White said he didn't have a clue on how much time was left in the high-scoring match played at the Big Horn Equestrian Center. The score came in the 99th minute of soccer.

"It was great to see the ball go into the back of the net, White said.

In the final few minutes, White just kicked the ball into the right place at the right time.

"I was back on the far post," White said. "Zach Zenk sent a cross, and I just put it in. I was so pumped after the goal. It was great to win it for the seniors just because how great they are for all of us, and the motivation they give us."

White has emerged as one of the top forwards for the young RHS squad.

"I guess when it all comes down you give it to your goal scorer," RHS coach Early Cornejo said. "Your goal scorer is going to find the net. He is a special kid, and those kids don't come around very often.

The Central Indians scored two early goals, but the Wolverines responded with two goals to send the match into the two 10-minute overtime periods.

"Overall, I'm just so proud of what these kids have done with the four seniors," Cornejo said. "The rest of them are all new kids. They wouldn't have done it without the seniors."

Cornejo said this is the first time the Wolverines had beaten Central in his five years as the head coach.

"It feels good to beat Central," Cornejo said. "It's always fun to beat a Cheyenne school."

The Wolverines advanced into the consolation championship by beating Rock Springs 1-0 on Friday afternoon.

Rock Springs had won the previous three meetings this season. The Tigers defeated he Wolverines last week at the Class 4-A West regional tournament and twice during the regular season.

"We have been looking for a win like this all season," RHS goalkeeper Logan Ridgway said. "Rock Springs has always been that top team. We went out and put everything out on the field.

"I'm not 100 percent sure why we won," Ridgway added. "This is when it counted the most. Rock Springs is an extremely physical team. They have seven people that are great on the ball."

Sheridan kept RHS scoreless 1-0 on Thursday in the opening round.

Riverton 4, Central 3 OT

(Saturday)

Down 2-0 in the first half, the Wolverines started their comeback on a White goal when he headed one in from close range. Lars Becker had the assist.

Two minutes into the second half, RHS deadlocked the score on a goal by Deitrik Becker. "

"It was fun to watch us score four goals," Cornejo said. "It's easy on the eyes."

RHS broke the tie in the first minute on a Shayden Coulsen goal. The Indians answered right back to head into the second overtime knotted at 3-3.

Riverton 1, Rock Springs 0

(Friday)

RHS scored first after White had the assist, and Kade Salisbury netted the goal.

"It was real big to get off to a good start," Salisbury said. "We didn't want to play catch-up with them. It was pretty easy to get up for the game because I didn't want to go home."

The two teams went scoreless the rest of the way, but it wasn't because of a lack of pressure from Riverton's defense and offense.

"We played incredible on defense," Ridgway said.

Michael Jones and Caleb Ogg kept Rock Springs frustrated playing defense in the middle of the field.

Scot Sowards and Lars Becker did the same on the outside.

Ridgway said White and Coulsen provided a huge lift from their offensive positions. In the final 10 minutes of the match, Coulsen was the No. 1 impact player for the Wolverines. On a couple of occasions, Coulsen battled for a score vs. the Rock Springs goalie but came up a little short.

Other trophies

Casper Kelly Walsh upset Sheridan 1-0 for the state 4-A championship. Riverton had beaten and tied Kelly Walsh during the season.

In the third-place match, Green River beat Laramie 1-0. With Riverton's consolation win, all three state trophies went to teams from the West 4-A.

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