Boyle's turn in soccer state tourney
It’s easy to get lost in all the brackets and terminology surrounding the state soccer playoffs and lose sight of the significance of what Boyle County and Danville’s soccer programs have done over the past six seasons.
Beyond the litany of regionals, sub-sectionals and sectionals, here’s the bottom line: The boys and girls teams at the two schools have combined to make their respective state tournaments 10 out of a possible 12 times during that span. And all but one of those teams has won its first-round game.
Yes, a realignment before the 2004 season made that much easier to accomplish. But that doesn’t diminish the accomplishment of making it to the state tournament. Whether it’s soccer or basketball or baseball, you beat the teams you have to beat to win your region, and the Boyle and Danville programs are doing that year in and year out.
This year it’s Boyle’s turn again, as that school’s boys and girls won their regions and have already won their sub-sectional games, which are the equivalent of first-round games in the Sweet Sixteen basketball tournaments. The Lady Rebels will play a sectional (or quarterfinal) game tonight at Woodford County, while the Rebels will host their sectional game against West Jessamine on Thursday.
This is the fifth straight year that a girls team has reached the round of eight (Danville in 2004 and ’07; Boyle in ’05, ’06 and ’08), and it’s the fourth straight year for one of the boys teams (Boyle in ’05 and ’08, Danville in ’06 and ’07). Boyle’s boys also made the state tourney in 2003, losing their first-round game.
The Boyle girls are playing Woodford for the first time since 2002, when they were in the same region and Woodford defeated the Lady Rebels 2-0 in the regional finals to advance to the state tourney.
Boyle and West Jessamine’s boys teams play almost every year, and West Jessamine seems to always win. Boyle has beaten the Colts at least once since Jessamine County split into two schools in 1997, but West Jessamine has won all seven meetings since 2001, including a 7-1 shellacking of the Rebels in this year’s season opener.
The winners of the upcoming games advance to the semifinals, which will be played Nov. 5 (girls) and Nov. 6 (boys) in Georgetown. No team from Boyle or Danville has ever made it to that round, but it’s bound to happen soon.
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For those planning to go to tonight’s Boyle girls game, Woodford’s home games are in Community Stadium, located inside Woodford County Park at the intersection of Ky. 2113 and U.S. 62. It’s the same facility used by Woodford’s football team, so directions can be found on this page. Scroll down through the column on the right side of the page to “Driving Directions.”