With any available light fading in Saturday’s Division III state soccer playoff and St. Michael the Archangel’s soccer team 30 seconds away from penalty kicks, Kyle Segalla closed out a memorable game in dramatic fashion.
Segalla took a pass from Devin Melancon and buried the game-winning goal into the left corner of the net, lifting No. 16 St. Michael to a 3-2 victory over No. 17 Bolton near the end of the second five-minute golden goal period.
“We’re pushing through and kicked it to the outside midfielder) who we trusted to get it back in the box,” Segalla said. “I was in the right place at the right time to kick it through.”
St. Michael (15-11-2) next travels to No. 1 E.D. White this week in regional action.
“Nothing’s been easy all year,” St. Michael coach Paul Fletcher said. “We knew there’s no easy games for us. Bolton’s well coached and had a style of play which was trying not to match up with our midfield. We couldn’t get into a rhythm. It was a battle.”
St. Michael led 2-0 throughout much of the first half that was played in a steady rain and dropping temperatures, taking a 1-0 lead on an assist from Segalla to Alec Hodges in the 16th minute.
The Warriors made it 2-0 in the 33rd minute when Segalla picked up a loose ball in the box following a throw-in and tapped it into the left corner.
To that point St. Michael’s defense had not allowed a shot on goal until Bolton’s David Gandarilla’s 20-yard rocket into the upper right corner in stoppage time.
Bolton tied the game in the 60th minute on Eddie Hernandez’s penalty kick following a foul in the box.
The teams went scoreless in both 10-minute overtime periods, sending the match to golden goals where the first score wins.
Both goalkeepers — St. Michael’s Nicholas Gautreaux (9 saves) and Bolton’s Dia Khawaldeh (11 saves) — came up with key stops until Melancon took the ball up the right side and passed to the middle of the box to Segalla, who won a one-on-one matchup for his state’s leading 43rd goal of the season.
“We played in a hard-fought game like this a couple of years ago and didn’t pull through,” Segalla said. “This time we knew we had to keep fighting, to keep pushing and we were going to get through it.”