Dropping its first game of the season, a 3-2 defeat to Romeoville in an opening-round match in the Windy City Ram Classic, was tough to swallow for Thornton co-op.
Making things a bit easier, however, was the fact the Wildcats still had a chance to earn their way to Toyota Park to play in the tournament’s consolation championship.
That’s exactly what Thornton did, topping St. Laurence 5-1, Providence 4-2 and Eisenhower 3-0 to punch its ticket to the home of the Fire.
“That loss just motivated us,” Thornton’s Ricky Estrada said. “It made us try harder. We knew we had one more chance to get to Toyota Park.”
Thornton, a SouthWest Suburban Red co-champion in 2012, rolled in the consolation title game Sunday, topping Lincoln Park 6-1.
“It was a great thing that (Reavis coach and tournament director Bob Morack) did having the consolation game (at Toyota Park),” Thornton coach David Gonzalez said. “It was great for the kids to experience a game like that. Some of them will never get to play on a field like that again.”
Farouk Amoo has led the Wildcats (4-2) with 12 goals. He had a hat trick against Eisenhower and scored twice against Lincoln Park.
Estrada has been dangerous on set pieces, dishing out six assists, while Emmanuel Barjebo has contributed two goals and nine assists.
Solid start for Lockport
Lockport advanced to the championship match of the Lemont Cup, advancing out of a pool that also included Lemont, Lincoln-Way West and Plainfield East.
The Porters fell 2-0 to Plainfield North in the title game.
“We’ve had a good start and we usually start slow, so this is a big positive,” Lockport coach Chris Beal said.
Lockport (3-2) earned a huge 2-1 win over Lemont, and also has victories over Minooka and Plainfield East. The Porters have been shut out in both their losses, falling 1-0 to Lincoln-Way West.
Player of the Week
Alec Guarino, of Marian Catholic, is this week’s SouthtownStar Boys Soccer Player of the Week.
Guarino, a junior forward, was named the Most Valuable Player of the Windy City Ram Classic, leading the Spartans to the title. He scored both goals in a 2-1 semifinal win over Bloom, had the clinching score in the shootout in the championship match and added a hat trick in Monday’s win over Homewood-Flossmoor.