For a few moments Saturday night, Gulliver’s boys’ soccer players vented their frustrations on the sideline.
Despite controlling most of its Region 4-2A semifinal match against rival Ransom Everglades, Gulliver found itself tied at one goal each after 80 minutes.
But as he has more than once this season, senior midfielder Bryan Ruiz-Unger gave Gulliver the relief it needed.
In the seventh minute of overtime, Ruiz-Unger controlled a ball about 20 yards in front of the Ransom goal and fired a quick shot over the reach of keeper Jake Deuel to deliver a 2-1 sudden-death victory for Gulliver that sent it to the regional finals for the second consecutive season.
Gulliver (17-2-3) will host American Heritage-Delray Tuesday at 3:30 p.m. in a rematch of last year’s regional final won by Heritage in Delray Beach.
“My teammates told me if you get a good look just shoot it,” said Ruiz-Unger, who scored his 12th goal of the season and his second game-winner in as many playoff matches. “I did, and I got it through. This happens to us a lot. We get a little frustrated, but it’s for the best because it makes us get on each other’s case and be more confident as a team.”
Gulliver defeated Ransom (22-3-3) for the third time in four meetings this season, with the only setback coming in the District 16-2A final won by Ransom in penalty kicks.
During the season series, Gulliver outscored Ransom 11-2.
On Saturday, Gulliver got the first score in the first minute of the second half on a goal by Andy Alvarez that came off a rebound following a shot by Alberto Poleo.
Gulliver had numerous shots on goal throughout the match and controlled possession, but Deuel kept Ransom in it with 10 saves.
His efforts allowed Ransom to tie the match in the 50th minute on a great individual effort by Francisco Carrera-Justiz, who maneuvered downfield and angled a shot past Gulliver keeper Esteban Sapetnitzky.
Gulliver nearly took the lead with 16 minutes remaining in regulation when Luis Diego headed in a ball. But the goal was nullified by an offside call.
• Region 4-5A semifinal – South Dade 2, Coral Gables 1: Carlos Leal didn’t realize until a couple of weeks ago, how long the soccer playoffs were.
“We never saw past districts before,” Leal said. “We never even thought about regionals or state. District was the round where it ended for us.”
Leal helped South Dade’s postseason journey go a little further at Tropical Park as he and Timothy Hamby scored the goals needed to help the Bucs reach their first regional final.
South Dade (9-7-2) will travel to play defending Class 5A state champion Weston Cypress Bay Tuesday at 7 p.m.
“Our formation switch late in the season has made a big difference,” Hamby said. “But our passion for the game is what keeps us going. Down in Homestead, we don’t have club soccer like other schools so all we have is this team.”
Leal lobbed a ball from 30 yards away near the corner of the goal area and it landed over the head of Coral Gables goalkeeper Joseph Paz in the first minute of the game. Hamby added another in the 42nd minute.
Coral Gables cut the deficit to one later in the half when Michael Hernandez headed in a through ball from Kevin Lopez. The Cavaliers (7-6-5) thought for a moment they had tied the match in the final minute when it appeared Alexander Oliva had scored on a header off a corner kick. But the goal was nullified by an offside call.
ANDRE C. FERNANDEZ
• Region 4-1A semifinal – Hillel 2, Westminster Christian 0: Early goals helped the Hurricanes (17-1-1) to victory over the Warriors (10-10-1) at Cutler Ridge Park. Both teams came into this match-up having just won overtime games in the quarterfinal.
Both of Hillel’s goals were scored in the first half. Salomon Serati got the Hurricanes on the board first with a driving goal scored in the 17th minute.
Albert Dichy scored on a similar goal in the 38th minute.
Hillel freshman goalkeeper Alan Landau was not challenged often, but made impressive saves to finish with a shutout.
In the regional final the Hurricanes will play Sagemont at North Miami Stadium.
Hillel has not had success against Sagemont this season, going 0-1-1 in its two meetings.
The South Dade wrestling team won its district for the 11th consecutive year at the District 16-3A finals hosted by Sunset.
The Buccaneers will send 14 wrestlers to regionals after 13 of them reached individual championship finals and eight won those matches to place first in their weight class.
“Getting 13 out of 14 weight classes in the finals in one of the toughest districts in the state is remarkable,” said South Dade coach Victor Balmeceda, who has spent 20 years with the school, 16 as coach.
Despite the success, Balmeceda felt some of his wrestlers who had runner-up finishes were upset in finals matches they should have won.
The Bucs only returned three defending individual district champions from last year’s squad, so a new wave of talent produced five new district champions.
Balmeceda hopes to get eight to 11 qualifiers for states at regional finals, which begin Friday.
Team standings: 1. South Dade 274.5; 2. Palmetto 147.5; 3. Southridge 111.5; 4. Coral Reef 95; 5. Varela 68.5; 6. Ferguson 63; 7. Sunset 57; 8. Killian 38.5.
Championship finals – 106: Brandon Gonsalves (SD) pin Matias Caceres (FER) 0:40; 113: Maleek Williams (SD) pin Jordan Marshall (SR) 4:51; 120: David Temple (PAL) pin Rogelio Gonzalez (SD) 4:49; 126: Justin Ramirez (SD) dflt. Alexander Brooks (PAL); 132: Patricio Lugo III (SD) pin Nixon Chavez (VAR) 5:06; 138: Isaiah Crosby (SD) pin Ramon Vega (CR) 1:51; 145: Alberto Pedraza (SD) pin Derrick Jones (CR) 2:28; 152: Anthony Morales (PAL) dec. Martavious Crawley (SD) 11-7; 160: Anthony Cooper (SD) pin Willie Bryant (SR) 3:29; 170: Maykel Dolorit (FER) dec. Stephon Moise (SD) 23-12; 182: Charles Decca (PAL) pin Jorge Umanzor (SD) 3:04; 195: Henry Haynes (SD) pin Jeremy Greenidge (PAL) 1:39; 220: Terrance Brown (SR) dflt. Andrew Yanes (VAR); 285: Cornell Gilmore (PAL) pin Donald Mesier (SD) 4:53.
Consolation finals – 106: Christian Delgado (SR) dec. Kenneth Beck (SUN) 9-1; 113: Roman Chester (PAL) pin Nicolas Grijalva (CR) 1:57; 120: Alexander Edwards (SR) pin Abbott Lopez (CR) 0:49; 126: Brandon Williams (KIL) dec. Marcelo Sierra (VAR) 16-5; 132: Curtis Doctor (SUN) dec. Robert Warmington (KIL) 7-6; 138: Lorenzo Fernandez (VAR) dec. Jagger Maguire (PAL) 4-2; 145: Christian Hooker (PAL) dec. Adrian Moreira (SUN) 8-7; 152: Helbert Canales (SUN) pin Marcos Garcia (SR) 0:46; 160: Daniel Pizano (SUN) pin Benjamin Perez (FER) 3:44; 170: Arturo Espina (CR) pin Justin Lopez (SUN) 0:23; 182: Kyle Mann (SR) pin Marcus McClain (KIL) 2:32; 195: Brendan Hartnett (FER) pin Aaron Sparber (CR) 1:09; 220: Jonathan Nehrebass (SD) pin Daniel Perez (CR) 1:19; 285: Sterling Shippy (CR) pin Andrew Martinez (VAR) 1:13.
• District 16-2A finals: The Homestead wrestling team won District 16-2A for the second year in a row with a team score of 256.5.
Like cross-town rival South Dade, the Broncos also advanced 14 wrestlers to regionals, with eight of them going home individual district champions in their respective weight classes.
Anthony Wint, who’s also a highly recruited junior linebacker on the football team, improved his season record to 33-1 after winning the 195-pound weight class with a pin of Carol City’s Cameron Fisher at 3:45.
Despite facing weaker competition in districts since realignment two years ago, the Broncos still maintain a difficult schedule in the regular season in preparation to make a run in regionals.
Team standings: 1. Homestead 256.5; 2. Miami Springs 148; 3. Mater Academy 123; 4. Central 89; 5. Belen 84; 6. Carol City 70; 7. Northwestern 25.
Championship finals – 106: Olsen Delisca (HOM) dec. Julian Ramirez (BEL) 11-6; 113: Yadiel Perez (HOM) pin Yandri Guerra (MA) 0:23; 120: Wilmer Almendarez (MA) pin David Sanchez (MS) 2:42; 126: Daniel Preciado (MS) dec. Yancarlos Guerra (MA) 5-2; 132: Tre’sean Bouie (HOM) pin Kenyatis Jones (CC) 5:22; 138: James Medal (MS) dec. Devonta Bohannon (HOM) 6-4; 145: Alex Duran (MS) pin Johntavious Broner (HOM) 4:59; 152: Liberico Carrasco (MS) dec. Benzo Rudnikas (BEL) 8-3; 160: Ripoll Oconnor (HOM) pin Daniel Deoliveira (MA) 1:01; 170: Maurice Rogers (HOM) dflt. Woody Jean-Louis (CEN); 182: Keith Simmons (HOM) dec. Cynard Bailey (NW) 15-3; 195: Anthony Wing (HOM) pin Cameron Fisher (CC) 3:45; 220: Demond Richardson (HOM) pin Dominick Pierre (CEN) 0:51; 285: Keonte Cash (BEL) pin Keyon Burgess (CEN) 0:53.
Consolation finals – 106: Osvany Ley (MA) dec. Jorge Barrios (MS) 6-3; 113: Ussama Malik (MS) bye; 120: Frank Melo (HOM) bye; 126: Lucas Dominguez (HOM) pin Taurus Anderson (CC) tech fall 16-1; 132: Yasiel Almira (MA) pin Brian Silva (MS) 0:55; 138: Paul Martinez (BEL) pin Johntae Powell (CC) 3:29; 145: Amir Nolasco (CEN) pin David Brito (MA) 3:16; 152: Travon Norman (HOM) pin Erin Granger (CEN) 3:54; 160: Cedric Williams (CEN) pin Jorge Suriel (MS) 3:54; 170: Erick Valdes (MS) pin Darryl Epps (CC) 2:50; 182: Rasheed Blatch (CEN) pin Elizer Solis (CC) 3:20; 195: Damion Johnson (NW) bye; 220: Alain Suares (MA) bye; 285: Miguel Roque (HOM) pin Adonis Alfonso (MA).
• District 14-8A final – Miami High 69, Miami Beach 34 – MH: Reid 5, Mendoza 8, Pierre 3, Sweeting 3, Evans 1, Johnson 9, Smith 11, Kimborough 9, Mompremier 18, Jackson 2. MB: Morgan 18, Henry 4, Roque 4, Pardo 3, Adrika 4, Jean 2. Halftime: MH 36-21. Three-pointers: Kimborough 2, Johnson, Morgan 2, Pardo. Rebounds: Mompremier 11. Assists: Mendoza 7. Steals: Reid 5. Blocks: Mompremier 4.
• District 15-3A final – Miami Country Day 55, Archbishop Curley 12 – MCD (24-1): Mackenzie 2, Swaby 3, B.Blot 9, Lewis 16, Minott 11, L.Blot 4, Kotalik 10. CUR: Edgecomb 10, Jean 2. Halftime: MCD 39-4. Three-pointers: Lewis 2, Minott. Steals: Minott 6. Rebounds: Kotalik 5. Assists: Lewis 5.
• District 15-4A final – Ransom 40, LaSalle 22 – RE: Crotty 4, Lopez 7, Smith 3, Oppenheim 4, Deutch 17, McDowell 5. LAS: Moye 2, Echevarria 7, Pena 2, de la Madriz 1, Cruz 1, Berry 8, Chapateau 1. Halftime: RE 23-13. Three-pointers: Deutch 3. Rebounds: Smith 14. Steals: Deutch, Smith 7. Assists: Deutch 4.
• District 16-3A final – Palmer Trinity 42, Florida Christian 30 – FC: Martinez 5, Jimenez 12, K. Jim 5, Saumell 2. PT (23-4): Gonzalez 1, Smith 6, Hebb 15, Granada 14, Parten 1, Waldman 5. Halftime: PT 20-18. Three-pointers: Granada 2, Hebb, Jimenez 1. Rebounds: Hebb 7. Assists: Granada 5. Steals: Smith 4.
• Gulliver 80, Northwest Christian 53 – GUL (19-6): Beattie 42, Diaz 8, Carreras 9, Siegel 4, Kadji 12, Paniz 5. Halftime: GUL 45-19. Three-pointers: Beattie 8. Rebounds: Siegel 11. Assists: Thomas 10. Steals: Beattie 3.
• Late Friday – Jackson 70, Miami Springs 68 – JAC (12-9): Phillips 13, Chevalier 9, Porter 16, D. Brown 6, Thompson 13, M. Brown 11, Augustin 2. Halftime: MS 29-25. Rebounds: Thompson 8. Assists: Porter 12. Steals: Porter 13. Blocks: Thompson 2. Wonjamiko Porter trible-double. JAC: 21-4 run to come back from down 15 with 3:30 left.
• Late Friday – Pace 85, Chaminade 80 – MP: Thomas 6, Justinine 8, Fisher 26, Wilson 3, Ogugua 1, Duarte 29, Alvarez 7, Saintvil 2. Rebounds: Fisher 11. Assists: Justinine 6. Steals: Duarte 7.
• Late Friday – Miami Beach 58, Coral Park 48 – CP: Cisneros 2, Sotolongo 14, Delgado 9, Thomas 7, Hernandez 8, Pimentel 8. MB (7-15): Warren 11, Williams 20, Klepper 6, Quant 4, Lasouba 12, McCall 5. Halftime: MB 31-12. Rebounds: Williams 10. Assists: Warren 5. Steals: Klepper 4. Blocks: Lasouba 3.
• Late Friday – Gulliver 74, LaSalle 57 – GUL: Chasin 14, Beattie 4, Ralat 18, Carreras 2, Lafuente 19, Thomas 11, Kadji 3, Paniz 1, Siegel 2. Halftime: LAS 35-22. Rebounds: Thomas 10. Assits: Lafuente, Ralat, Chasin 3. Steals: Ralat, Carreras 3.
• Late Friday – Florida Christian 47, St. Brendan 41 – FC: Wicks 7, Cordoza 11, Herschman 10, Perez 8, Weeks 2, Sikora 6. STB: Ruiz 3, Dominguez 7, Harduval 8, Fenelon 13, Suarez 4, Moliver 6.
• Late Thursday – Jackson 59, South Dade 53 – JAC (11-9): Phillips 13, Chevalier 9, Porter 11, D. Brown 4, Thompson 14, M. Brown 7. Halftime: Jac 28-19. Rebounds: Phillips 7. Assists: Porter 9. Steals: Porter 9. Blocks: Thompson 3.