GALLATIN Opportunity knocked on the door, and Chase Freeman answered.
The Station Camp High junior netted the go-ahead goal with 2:47 remaining in regulation, and the Bison hung on for a 2-1 victory over visiting Gallatin in the District 9-AAA Tournament semifinals on Wednesday evening.
Freeman followed up his initial shot after a scramble in front of Gallatin senior goalkeeper Deonte Kensinger, giving Station Camp (18-1) its first lead of the match.
“Both teams were very physical,” Freeman said. “(Gallatin head coach Greg) Harper had a great game plan for them, holding it back in the defense. They played great.
Kensinger made 16 saves.
“(He was the) best keeper I think I’ve ever played in my life,” Freeman said of Kensinger. “He is really good. I hope he just keeps working and gets better.”
Green Wave senior Cameron Martin put Gallatin (10-10) ahead with 20:05 left in the first half, firing a diagonal shot to the lower, left corner and past Station Camp junior goalkeeper Eli McCormick.
Freeman tied the match 3:13 into the second half when his shot trickled into the net despite Kensinger initially getting his hands on the ball.
The Green Wave were forced to play shorthanded when Gallatin senior Tyler Lee received a red card for a dangerous tackle with 15:24 left.
“I don’t think Tyler Lee’s had a card all year,” Harper said. “He made a good tackle, shoulder to shoulder, ball first. Linesman didn’t raise his flag. Center (referee is) 40 yards away, goes for the red card right away. It’s unbelievable, and that really put us in a hole, having to play a man down for the last 20-plus minutes.”
Station Camp advanced to Thursday evening’s championship match to face Hendersonville and earned a berth in next week’s Region 5-AAA Tournament.
Gallatin loses seven graduating seniors – Kensinger, Lee, Martin, Marco Martinez, John Franklin, Tyler Carlson and Landon Taylor.
Reach Chris Brooks at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 615-575-7118. Follow him on Twitter @CB_SumnerSports.