The Commercial-News, Danville, IL


October 6, 2012

Trojans rally to take sectional

WEST TERRE HAUTE, Ind. —  The Covington high school soccer team won its first sectional title in that sport in school history when the Trojans defeated the West Vigo Vikings 2-1 in extra time.

The school started playing soccer in 1992 under coach Mark Wilson, so it has taken 20 years for the team to get their hands on sectional hardware.

During much of that span, Covington was placed in sectionals where they played schools with eight to 10 times their enrollment – which meant that their seasons had ended in disappointment until now.

For much of this contest, it looked as if no one was going to win as both teams had chances but saves by the opposing keepers kept the slate clean.

The deadlock ended midway through the second half when Covington failed to clear a ball from in front of their goal and West Vigo tapped it in to lead 1-0.

The Trojans responded by upping their pressure, but the Vikings’ keeper is one of the better goalies in the area and he made save after save, including one where Covington had five players take a poke at the ball to no avail.

It took seven more minutes, but the Trojans finally got a goal from opening game hero Justin Long — who scored on a long kick off a pass from James Foley that soared over the head of the keeper and into the back of the net.

“I had an opportunity and just took it,” Long said of his shot. “I wanted it so bad. I just can’t believe it went in, but it was a relief because it tied the game.”

The game stayed knotted as regulation ended, meaning that the teams would have to play two seven-minute halves. If the game were still tied, it would go to penalty kicks – an outcome that no one ever wants to see.

The first half of extra time saw both teams move the ball up and down the field, but to little effect. The Trojans dodged a bullet when a foul was called on them just inches outside the box.

Had it been inside, it would have been a penalty kick — the same thing that defeated Covington in the title game last year.

Instead, the game moved into the second extra half and with 2:30 left, David Messick scored to put Covington up 2-1.

“I just saw it come to me and I kicked it and it went in,” said the senior of his game-winner.

The final two-plus minutes saw West Vigo repeatedly force the action, but Covington kept kicking the ball into the Viking end to use up time.

When the whistle blew to end the game, the Trojans swarmed the field in celebration.

“We’re like a family and we’ve got heart,” said senior Damon Hegg after the contest. “We stick together and think we can overcome anything and we did.”

Covington coach Ryan Sowers had played for the Trojans a decade ago and his team lost a sectional on penalty kicks. Asked if this win erased the effects of that loss, he replied, “Right now it does.”

Sowers said his team did not play its best soccer, but they “had enough heart and drive to get the win.”

He closed by saying, “This win is for all the Covington soccer players who’ve played for us in the past. This is for all of us, then and now.”

The Trojans are 9-4-1 and will face Washington on Thursday in regional action in Greencastle, Ind.

Greg Flint is a freelance writer for the Commercial-News. You can contact him at

Text Only
  • SPT - CN0731 - Dans photo 1 Danville boots one away DANVILLE — Keith Shumaker, an every day first baseman, was tied for the team lead in RBIs this season, before making his first start on the mound.But that was the least of the concerns for the Danville Dans, who made four fielding errors en route to

    July 31, 2014 2 Photos

  • Local Sports Calendar TODAYProspect League BaseballWest Virginia Miners at Danville Dans, 6:30 p.m.Local TennisMcTagertt Tennis Tournament at North Montgomery, 3:30 p.m.FRIDAYLocal TennisMcTagertt Tennis Tournament at North MontgomerySATURDAYLocal TennisMcTagertt Tourname

    July 31, 2014

  • SPT - CN0730 - Dans baseball photo 1 Dans continue to struggle DANVILLE — The Danville Dans haven’t exactly been playing their best baseball in the second half of the season. After taking the West Division title in the first half with a 19-11 record, Danville has played sub-.500 baseball in the second half and c

    July 30, 2014 2 Photos

  • SPT - CN0730 - Illini football media photo Experienced Illini looking for success CHICAGO — Illinois Fighting Illini head coach Tim Beckman is hoping that the third time is the charm.Beckman begins his third season at the helm of the Illini, and with the nucleus of last season’s team returning, it may finally be time for Illinois

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPT - CN0730 - Purdue football media photo Hazell hopes for smooth second season CHICAGO — After a season to forget in 2013, Purdue head coach Darrell Hazell is expecting better results as his team begins training camp next week. Hazell spoke to the media during the 2014 Big Ten Football Media Days at the Hilton Chicago, and afte

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • Local Sports Calendar TODAYProspect League BaseballHannibal Cavemen at Danville Dans, 6:30 p.m.THURSDAYProspect League BaseballWest Virginia Miners at Danville Dans, 6:30 p.m.Local TennisMcTagertt Tennis Tournament at North Montgomery, 3:30 p.m.FRIDAYLocal TennisMcTagertt

    July 30, 2014

  • SPT - CN0729 - Dustbowl photo 2 Repeat performance Championship Sunday was in full swing at the 42nd Annual Dustbowl at David S. Palmer Arena. In the men’s division it was defending champions Leek & Sons against the Hickory Beavers. Leek & Sons made it back to back championships with a 29-point victo

    July 29, 2014 2 Photos

  • SPT - CN0729 - Brickyard photo Gordon kisses 'The Bricks' for 5th time INDIANAPOLIS — The common gift for a 20th anniversary is either china or platinum.But for Jeff Gordon on Sunday, he was more interested in the PPG Trophy made of gold, sterling silver and alloy aluminum and the native of Pittsboro, Ind., wasn’t going

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Old friends meet again in city tourney DANVILLE — Gene Gourley and Bryan Stine have a lot of history on the tennis court. The two of them, who have been playing each other at the Danville Tennis Center for over 20 years, renewed their rivalry again on Sunday during the Greater Danville Ar

    July 29, 2014

  • SPT - CN0729 - Junior Dustbowl photo Free throws decide junior Dustbowl title DANVILLE — In the boys’s Division it was DV Stars vs. Squad for the Championship with the Squad coming back from an early 16-point deficit to beat DV Stars 59-55 in overtime. Squads Parker Lee made one of two free throws with 18 seconds left in regul

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

NJCAA Tourney Photos 2014

Check out the action at the NJCAA Division II National Men's Basketball Tournament March 18-22 at DACC. Buy photos from the Commercial-News here:

Must Read
AP Video
Netanyahu Vows to Destroy Hamas Tunnels Obama Slams Republicans Over Lawsuit House Leaders Trade Blame for Inaction Malaysian PM: Stop Fighting in Ukraine Cantor Warns of Instability, Terror in Farewell Ravens' Ray Rice: 'I Made a Huge Mistake' Florida Panther Rebound Upsets Ranchers Small Plane Crash in San Diego Parking Lot Busy Franco's Not Afraid of Overexposure Fighting Blocks Access to Ukraine Crash Site Dangerous Bacteria Kills One in Florida Workers Dig for Survivors After India Landslide Texas Scientists Study Ebola Virus Smartphone Powered Paper Plane Debuts at Airshow Southern Accent Reduction Class Cancelled in TN
NDN Video
Famous Internet Cats Help Big Cause With Viral Video Raw: Obama Gets Hug From Special Olympian Snoop Dogg Narrating Animal Footage Is Perfect Tigers Acquire David Price - @TheBuzzeronFOX Russell Brand Slams Sean Hannity Over Gaza Conflict Segment Chapter Two: Composing for a film in retirement Woman's Dive Goes Terribly Wrong Brian Williams Reports on Daughter Allison Williams' 'Peter Pan' Casting News Did Jimmy Fallon Look Up Heidi Klum's Dress? What Drama? Miranda Kerr Poses Topless Plane crashes in San Diego Costco parking lot Justin Bieber Takes To Instagram To Diss Orlando Bloom You Won't Believe the Celeb Cameos in "Sharknado 2" Pitch Invading Morons Cause Chaos - @TheBuzzeronFOX Orlando Bloom 'Takes a Swing' at Justin Bieber In Ibiza Sadie Doesn't Want Her Brother to Grow Up "Maxim" Hotness! See Jessica Alba's Sizzling Spread Two women barely avoid being hit by train Broken Water Main Floods UCLA Orlando Bloom and Justin Bieber Reportedly Came To Blows In Ibiza