NILES — A goal on a free kick by senior Sam Webster was the difference in Revere's 2-1 victory over Hubbard in a Division II boys soccer regional final Saturday at Bo Rein Stadium.
Webster's deciding goal came three minutes into the second half and sends the Minutemen to the state tournament for the second time in three years.
In 2016, the Minutemen advanced to the state title game before losing to Kettering Archbishop Alter.
“I was a little nervous because I knew that this was the type of game where one more goal might make the difference,” Webster said. “We practice that scenario all the time. Practice does really pay off.”
Webster said he was confident his shot would find the net as soon as it left his foot.
“I've taken a lot of those kicks over the past few seasons,” Webster said. “I can usually tell right away whether or not it's going to be successful. I felt pretty good about this one. It was a great feeling because we've worked for this moment since June.”
Hubbard (19-1-1) struck first with 14:31 showing on the first-half clock on a goal by Anthony Gagliardi. It was the first time Revere found itself trailing in its five tournament games.
“As we expected, Hubbard came out very aggressive, they are a strong, attacking team and they countered very quickly,” Revere coach Nick DePompei said. “It was important that we shake off that goal and respond quickly.”
Respond they did. Less than three minutes after Hubbard took the lead, Revere answered with a goal by Joey Klein that tied the score. Things remained tied until Webster's second-half boot.
“We continued to talk through things, and [Webster] did a really nice job with that free kick,” DePompei said. “We work hard on the set pieces. Our guys did a great job of taking advantage of what was given to them.”
For Revere, a return trip to the state tournament means a shot at redemption.
“Every year we shoot for the state's final four,” DePompei said. “It's such a tough road, so to get back again is quite an accomplishment for these boys. This was a total team effort from the starters to all the bench players. Now we want to finish the job.”
Revere will play Bay Village Bay in a state semifinal game Wednesday at 7 p.m at a site to be determined.