Heritage boys top North Oconee in penalty kicks

The Heritage boys soccer team got to penalty kicks again on Tuesday, and again the Patriots pulled out a victory. Heritage scored on all four of its penalty kick chances and goalkeeper Connor Domeleski made two diving saves to preserve a 3-2 victory over North Oconee at Evans Memorial Stadium.

Heritage (6-2) won its fourth consecutive game and for the second time during that streak lost a lead in regulation only to win in penalty kicks.

Austin Kulp, Adam North, Akil Williams and Jonathan Mendez each beat North Oconee keeper Kyle Chiu with Mendez’s blast turning out to be the match-ender. That was made possible by the work of Domeleski, a sophomore, who made diving stops on two of the three shots he faced as Justin Peachey and Garett Walker were turned away.

Heritage had a great chance to snap a 2-2 near the end of regulation, but Chiu dove and knocked away Edel Ramos’ chance with one minute to play.

North Oconee had pulled even with 4 1/2 minutes left when Reed Blevins scored off a rebound. Heritage missed on two other opportunities for goal No. 3 when Luis Avila hit the crossbar with about 6 1/2 minutes to play and Kulp later hit the right post with a shot.

The visiting Titans finally got on the scoreboard at the 14:45 mark on Sean Fitzgerald’s goal.

Before that, two goals from Adam North were enough to put Heritage up 2-0. North took a pass from Kulp and beat Chiu at the 25:55 mark of the second half for a two-goal advantage. The Patriots jumped on top in the first half with a beautiful goal when Edder Mendez made a nice crossing pass to Austin McMillan, who while falling away from the field of play had an equally-impressive feed to North for a 1-0 lead.

North Oconee had its chances during the first 40 minutes, but Domeleski made four saves, all of which came in the final 17 minutes.

Domeleski’s best work came during a 45-second stretch where the sophomore made a diving stop of a Peachey shot at the 12:05 mark, scooped up a loose ball 30 seconds later and with 11:20 to play made another save on an attempt by Lucas Sizemore to keep the game scoreless.

Jonathan Mendez was high with his free kick opportunity at the 18:46 mark and Ramos’ shot was wide with 14:20 to go, representing the Patriots best chances to score before North broke up the scoreless affair.