Admirals season ends with hard loss to rival

MARYVILLE — Farragut High School boys soccer coach Ray Dover saw his first season come to an end on Wednesday, May 11, in the District 4-AAA semifinals.

The Admirals dropped a 2-1 decision to Maryville at John Sevier Elementary School but Dover and his squad aren’t dwelling on the past. The coach, who completed his first year, and his team have already turned the calendar to next year.

“The 2017 season began at 8:47 p.m. on May 11,” Dover said. “It began when that final whistle sounded in Maryville.

“We’re going to take the kids to camp this summer for the first time and we’re going to begin working to get better for next year. I’m really proud of the boys for the effort that they gave us. But you have to tip your hat to Maryville. They played really well.”

Farragut (11-4-4) outshot the Red Rebels 15-13 and took the early lead in the match. Senior John Totten scored the game’s first goal on a header in the sixth minute.

“We took the lead when we scored early against Maryville,” Dover said. “We outshot Maryville.

“We outshot in most of the games that we played. We just had trouble finishing. We had trouble getting the ball in the back of the net. Scoring is an art. It’s not a science. We had problems scoring this year and that was a problem last year too. We had trouble finishing shots.”

Maryville (14-4-2) pulled even when Admirals senior goalkeeper when Chris Fernandez tallied in the 16th minute. That sequence began when Admirals senior goalkeeper Eli Lewis was called for a foul when he collided with Maryville’s Will Barham in the goal box.

Red Rebels forward Chris Fernandez misfired on the set piece but came up with the rebound and buried the ball in the back of the net to knot the game 1-1.

The Red Rebels tallied the game-winning goal in the 75th minute when Matthew Campbell found the back of the Admirals’ net.

The goal sealed the win for Maryville, which beat the Admirals twice this season and knocked Farragut out of the postseason for the first time. The victory also helped the Red Rebels avenge two consecutive playoff losses to the Admirals.

For Dover, the 2016 campaign served as a building year and he noted that he wanted his players to leave the field having learned some vital life lessons.

“Year one is really year zero [for a new coach], he said. “You come in and you establish a culture.

“I’m using this [loss] to teach the boys lessons about life and not just sports. In life, you’re going to have these things happen to you. You have disappointments is life. We all do and you have to know how to come back from them.”