SYCAMORE – Burlington Central turned a failed Kaneland corner kick with 1:30 left into a game-winner in the Class 2A Sycamore Regional championship match Friday.
The Rockets cleared the corner and countered. Jacob Schutta assisted an Alan Camarena goal to give Burlington Central a 1-0 win and the regional title.
“It was one the best shots I have had. I just aimed and took the shot. I didn’t even see the goalie,” Camarena said. “I am pretty excited.”
The swift counter by the Rockets went as well as it could have. Schutta’s pass was bouncing when it came to Camerena.
“I heard Alan calling for the ball and I hit it one time, as quick as I could, to get him the ball, and Alan made an excellent shot,” Schutta said.
Camarena let the ball bounce a few times before taking the shot on the half volley from the top of the box. The ball flew past Kaneland goalkeeper Jarred Karr into the side net.
That lone goal gave Burlington Central its second regional championship in school history. It also avenged Kaneland’s regional championship over the Rockets last season.
“It was nice to get the result. I think that we deserved to win,” Burlington Central coach Mike Gecan said. “That is not taking anything away from Kaneland. They are a very good team and that game could have went either way. We found a way to score, and that is what great teams do.”
Burlington Central dominated most of the match. The Rockets came out with pressure, but could not break through the Knights’ backline. Burlington Central outshot Kaneland, 17-4.
“They had lots of shots, but they weren’t quality either until that last one,” Knights coach Scott Parillo said. “There was one quality shot the whole game and it goes in. That is just the way it goes.
“It was a good game – two good teams going out and fighting each other. I wish it was still us in the playoff, but it is not.”
The Rockets will head to the Burlington Central Sectional and will play the winner of the Rochelle Regional on Tuesday.