Shepard’s Ivan Magana felt he should have had a hat trick Monday, as one of his shots that went off the bottom of the crossbar and may have gone down beyond the goal line was ruled not to be a goal.
But two goals and a win for the Astros over district rival Eisenhower, the defending South Suburban Red champion, made for quite a night nonetheless.
“The win is what matters,” Magana said. “It means a lot. The guys behind me work so hard in practice. This is a huge win for us. It’s a good feeling.”
Colm McGhee’s penalty kick broke a 2-2 deadlock and Magana’s second goal sealed the 4-2 win in Blue Island, putting the Astros in first place in the Red.
“This puts us in control in the conference,” Shepard coach Tim Eyer said. “The last time our program has been in this position was 16 years ago.”
Eisenhower (7-6-2, 4-2) went ahead 2-1 with 33:40 left in the match on the second goal of the night from Alfredo Cervantes, who scored off a terrific cross from Giovanni Garcia after Garcia made a strong move down the baseline.
But the Astros (6-4-1, 5-1) quickly answered as a scramble in front of the Eisenhower goal ended with Logan Dolehide finding the net.
With 10:46 left, Magana played a nice ball to Edgar Madrigal, who was taken down in the box. The Astros were awarded a penalty kick and McGhee put it away with a low shot to the left of Eisenhower goalie Gustavo Flores.
“I wasn’t nervous,” McGhee said. “I usually take the PKs so it just felt like a usual thing. I picked a spot and I just slotted it in.”
Eisenhower’s chances of a rally took a big hit when Josue Leal was given a red card with 4:15 left. Magana then scored on a breakaway.
Fuad Abuzerr made four saves for the Astros.
“We have to improve our attitude and our work ethic defensively,” Eisenhower coach Iran Rodriguez said. “We have a couple weeks before the playoffs so hopefully we can improve.”