By Ray Schaefer - CNHI News Service
Oct. 23, 2013 —
Jordan Smith has scored one and two goals for Boyd County's boys soccer team many times, but never three.
Smith's hat trick — including two in the last 10 minutes — led the Lions to a 4-1 win over West Carter in the 16th Region Tournament at Fleming County.
Next for Boyd County: Rowan County in the semifinals Tuesday after press time.
To Smith, three goals in 80 minutes was nice because he won for all the Lions.
“It's probably the best feeling in sports, I think, besides hitting a grand slam for the World Series or something,” he said.
Smith opened the scoring in the 10th minute when he converted a Jonah Black pass and sent it past Comet keeper Blade Conley. He finished the Lions' attack in the 80th when he tapped in sophomore Isaac Puzey's assist.
In between was Smith's second goal in the 72nd that featured as many twists and turns as a rural road in Harlan, Bell, Magoffin or Pike counties.
The journey started about 35 yards to Conley's left. Then, he dribbled to the right past the Comets' Allen McClurg and to the left and beyond Austin Henderson and ended up with a right-footed finish less than five yards in front of Conley.
Smith wasn't sure how to describe the run.
“When I see someone, I just try to get out of the way of him,” Smith said. “It's kind of hard to explain.”
Boyd County coach William Ferguson, meanwhile, has grown used to what he saw Smith do.
“He's been doing it since I met him in the fifth grade,” Ferguson said. “It'd be nice to have that kind of feet.”
Monday was as much a Black show as Smith's scoring — Black beat Conley in the 71st minute and assisted in two of Smith's three. Sophomore Isaac Puzey assisted in Smith's third score.
West (10-11-1) completed a season that included an All “A” regional crown. Assistant coach Troy Combs said that was consolation enough.
“It was a good victory for us, for the program, something we'll definitely take pride in,” Combs said. “We definitely ... we're looking to do more in the districts and the region, but we're happy with All “A.”
Eight minutes after Smith's first goal, West's Troy Brickles bested Boyd County's Wyatt Lewis to equal the score.
Boyd County (8-7-2) outshot West, 33-3, for the night, but was Ferguson worried the longer the game remained tied? Yes and no.
“You expect close games in tournament soccer,” Ferguson said. “We were creating a lot of opportunities for us; we were unlucky finishing them for a long time … just unlucky over and over and over again.”
As for facing Rowan County, Ferguson said the Lions will have to be a lot more intense.
“(Rowan County is) going to be ready, I know they will,” he said. “Max (Vikings coach Max Hammond III) with those guys, and I'm sure they're going to be ready to go.”