Triton topped visiting Smithfield-Selma, 4-3, in the first round of the NCHSAA 3-A boys soccer playoffs on Monday night as Tzuriel Morales-Olvera scored two goals.
Elias Lopez had a goal and an assist as the Hawks (22-1) advanced to a second-round match at home against Jacksonville (17-4-2) on Thursday night.
Lopez scored the lone goal when Triton opened the 2023 season with a 1-0 win at SSS on August 14.
“Certainly. Smithfield-Selma was a really good team, incredibly fast and very aggressive and they sort of knocked us on our heels for a bit,” said Triton coach Brian Foster. “We settled down and scored the first goal when Elias Lopez flicked a heade rover to Tzuriel Morales, who finished at the back post.
“We managed to give up a penalty kick with just over a minute to go in the first half and they tied it up 1-1.
“In the second half, Tzuriel scored on a header from a free kick by Ever Quintanilla. They tied it again before Elias scored our third goal from a free kick. A mix up at the back allowed them to tie it once again, 3–3, before Marquis Rosado scored a header from a corner by Tommy Lopez with just over four minutes to go.
“It was crazy and even though we made mistakes to let them back in the game, the boys never quit.”