Briarwood downs Indian Springs in tight top-10 battle

Published 11:54 am Friday, March 24, 2023

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By ALEC ETHEREDGE | Managing Editor

NORTH SHELBY – The Briarwood Lions’ boys soccer team has been living on the edge lately, and that continued on Thursday night, March 23 in another thrilling area battle with Indian Springs that went down to the wire.

Briarwood’s last 10 games have all been decided by 10 goals or less, with eight being one-goal games and another ending in a tie, as the Lions have won seven of those.

None, however, were bigger than the last two area wins.

Despite a 1-0 loss to Westminster at Oak Mountain in their last outing, the Lions beat Pelham 1-0 in a thrilling battle just before with a late goal, and on Thursday night, they were able to take down Indian Springs in the exact same fashion with a 1-0 victory.

In similar style to the Pelham matchup, the first half came and went with a scoreless battle between the two teams, as two of the state’s top defenses matched intensity.

Briarwood, however, did maintain possession for much of the first half with a few shots on goal, while Indian Springs wasn’t able to find as much success with the ball.

That eventually paid off in the second half.

What was still a defensive first 20 minutes of the second period, eventually saw a game-changing moment with 19 minutes left.

With the Lions applying offensive pressure throughout, it eventually paid off when Ian Robertson was able to strike a perfect shot into the back of the net off an assist from Caedmon Ervin to give Briarwood a 1-0 advantage.

With the way Briarwood’s defense was playing, that lead seemed safe.

Indian Springs, however, found a way to create some late excitement with their offense.

It took all the way until the final minute of the game, but Springs earned one of its best chances of the game with less than a minute left when a shot trekked toward the goal but clanked off the cross bar.

In a moment where Briarwood players and fans were holding their breath, the Lions were able to take a deep sigh of relief shortly after, while Indian Springs saw the chance at an equalizer end in heartbreak as the final seconds ticked off the clock.

With that win, Briarwood is now 12-2-2 overall, but more importantly, the Lions are 3-1 overall in area play and in a tie for first place with Pelham for one of the two playoff spots out of the area.

Indian Springs is now 9-7 overall and 1-2 in area play, but they’ll still have opportunities ahead against all three area teams to earn a playoff spot.