RYE, N.Y. – Josh Kogan picked up a loose ball at the Rye 40-yard line with just under two minutes remaining and knew immediately what he was going to do.
The Horace Greeley senior and defender unleashed a shot on goal and it would be the difference as the Quakers overcame a determined Rye, 1-0, in overtime of a Section 1 boys’ soccer game Wednesday.
The win snapped a mini three-game losing streak for the Quakers, who are now 5-7. It was Kogan’s second goal of the season and first game-winner.
“I love that shot from long distance and I just feel confident,” said Kogan, a three-year varsity player. “I had scored my other, against North Salem, from around the same distance.”
A Greeley player sent the ball into Rye’s zone and, after a brief exchange, it was cleared to midfield. Kogan, who had pushed up field along with his fellow defenders, corralled the ball, took a stride and stepped into a shot. The ball went whistling through the crisp night air and hit the crossbar, just evading a leaping Rye goalie Liam Harris. The ball caromed down off the crossbar and fell behind Harris, sending Greeley on a mad rush to congratulate Kogan.
“I took that spot in the middle of the field because I figured the ball was coming out,” Kogan said. “My patience paid off and I thought pass first.
“I know the Rye goalie is a very good keeper. When I took the shot, I felt it was strong enough. When it went right off the crossbar, I got a little bit of a lucky bounce.”
Kogan said it was a timely and much-needed win after tough losses last week to Byram Hills, Keio and undefeated Port Chester.
Rye coach Jared Small felt for his team, who he said played an excellent game.
“I give Greeley credit for a good shot and it was kind of an unlucky bounce for us,” Small said. “ We played 90 minutes against a really strong team and we had some legitimate chances to score.”
Small said this strong effort followed up an excellent showing against Byram Hills in Rye’s previous game.