For a brief moment, the partisan crowd at the ZYSA Championship Field erupted in cheers, as it appeared the Zionsville Lady Eagles soccer team had kept its season alive when Hannah Timbrook scored a tying goal with just 1:36 remaining.
But as quickly as the crowd had erupted in cheers, they started booing as the far-side assistant referee ruled the play to be off-sides. The call stood and Avon held on to beat Zionsville 1-0.
"To be honest, I couldn't see (whether or not Timbrook was offsides)," Zionsville head coach Ramon Aguillon said. "I saw the ball crossed in and don't know if they had anybody staying on the post or not — I couldn't see it from the bench. The girls are saying there was someone there, but I don't know, I can't tell you for sure. You have to be pretty damn sure to call that at the end of the game. It's tough; it's really tough."
It was the second-straight season that a controversial decision by a referee helped end the Zionsville season in the regional.
Last season in the regional final against Brebeuf, a call went against Zionsville that completely changed the complexion of the game.
"It is just very difficult," Aguillon said. "The girls worked their hearts out. They believed and wanted to win this game. They pushed to the end and thought they tied it with 90 seconds left. Sometimes that's how sports are. You try your best and there has to be a winner and a loser. Unfortunately today we were on the losing side."
See Wednesday's Times Sentinel for more on this story.