TAMPA — Liam Murphy scored three minutes into the first overtime as Seminole — after blowing a late lead — beat Hillsborough 3-2 in a Class 4A region quarterfinal Thursday.
“We knew we could beat this team,” Murphy said. “We just had to keep our heads in the game.”
Shane Butler played a ball in from the left corner. Murphy cut through the box and volleyed in the winner before being mobbed by his teammates in front of the Terriers goal.
“We wanted it more,” Murphy said.
After failing to convert on numerous chances for nearly an hour, a corner from Butler in the 56th minute found Tanner Vaughn, who made it 1-0. Murphy was then taken down in the box seven minutes later and converted the penalty kick to put the Warhawks up 2-0.
“We thought we were fine at 2-0,” Murphy said.
But Hillsborough (10-7-3), which had few serious chances through the first 70 minutes, rallied. In the 72nd minute, a long throw-in from Matias Marchi bounced in the box, skimmed off a Seminole defender’s head and into the goal to cut the Warhawks lead to one.
Then in extra time, Marchi placed a corner on the head of Alejandro Tovar to tie it.
“If we could have finished our chances in the first half, it wouldn’t have been close,” Seminole coach Rick Masi said. “We had the run of play and the possession; just couldn’t find the back of the net.”
The referee blew the whistle just as the Warhawks kicked off, sending it to overtime. But Seminole (15-8-1), which scored three goals in the final 12 minutes to beat Northeast in the district semifinal, regrouped.
“This team hasn’t quit all year,” Terriers coach Steven Colborne said. “They play to the final whistle. But I think (Seminole) deserved the win.”
More 4A: King gave up a goal early and let Palmetto string together two more at the end of the first half in a 5-1 road loss in the region quarterfinals. Senior Alan Hackney scored his team-leading 15th goal of the year after capitalizing on a through ball midway through the first half for the Lions (13-7-6).