Hosting Central Gwinnett in the opening round of the GHSA playoffs, the Lambert Boys survived and advanced with a 2-1 victory on Friday night.
With plenty of whistles and stoppages in play, the early part of the match was slow. But in the 16th minute, a poor pass by the Central Gwinnett defense was intercepted by Eoin Griffiths at the top of the box. With the goalkeeper charging out, Griffiths lofted a perfect chip over the keeper's head to put the Longhorns up 1-0.
Central Gwinnett would even the score ten minutes later when their striker completed an Oscar-worthy flop in the box to earn a questionable penalty kick. With the score tied at 1-1, the Longhorns went back to work on offense, creating chances and getting the better run of play. Their efforts would be rewarded when Griffiths ripped a shot from 25 yards out that was too hot to handle, putting the Longhorns up 2-1 as the half came to an end.
Things got tense in the second half as the physicality of the match turned up a notch. Up and down the field, both teams created scoring opportunities but could not convert. The Lambert defense of Trey Hines, Gabe Fontana, Logan Racine, Nick Alliston and Christian Girard, along with goalkeeper Avery Dekshenieks, kept Central Gwinnett at bay and closed out the victory 2-1.
Next up for the Lambert Boys is a home match on Wednesday against Hillgrove in the second round. Game time is TBD.