Thunder Ridge High School boys soccer was having a ball heading into this year’s 5A state tournament.
Borah’s Dominic Ishimwe crashed the fun, though.
Winners of two-straight — upsets over Highland and Madison in the 5A District 5-6 tournament — Thunder Ridge was beaten 2-0 during the opening round by District 3’s Borah Thursday afternoon at the Idaho Falls Soccer Complex.
Ishimwe’s two goals were the deciding factor as the junior forward scored during the seventh and 14th minute before helping the Lions keep the Titans scoreless for the first time since Oct. 2.
“My first goal, I was just really determined to help the team out,” said Ishimwe, who added the Lions were playing without one of their best players, senior Ahmed Ibrahimovic.
“And the second goal was when I got pulled out (for a yellow card). That made no sense and that really angered me, so I tried to do whatever I could to hit that,” Ishimwe added.
After Ishimwe’s two early goals — his second coming two minutes after the patient, lengthy forward received a yellow card for running out of bounds while fighting for positioning with a Thunder Ridge player fixing his jersey, per the match’s officials — Thunder Ridge came up empty handed during its first state tournament appearance ever.
Midfielder Jerry Lopez came the closest to breaking the Titans’ goose egg, as his header before the half bounced off the top cross bar.
Left wing Evan Williams performed multiple crosses towards Borah’s box, only for the opportunities to fail.
Borah outshot Thunder Ridge 19-11 Thursday. Despite the two quick goals surrendered, Titans’ goalie Jason Rogel finished with four saves.
“One thing I think we did well and did do in those final moments was that they didn’t quit,” first year Thunder Ridge coach Corey Toldson said. “Not once did we give up. So we didn’t have the intensity that we needed to have, but we didn’t give up and they kept fighting and the defense was a lot stronger.
“After those two goals, they couldn’t make it past us, so we played a lot stronger,” Toldson added.
Toldson added that the Titans “didn’t come out with the same energy” as their previous two matches, upsets over the District 6’s usual-perennial programs.
“Our intensity was up. We weren’t hungry for the ball,” Toldson said. “We didn’t the same game as we did against Madison and Highland last week. We just didn’t have that intensity.”
Thunder Ridge plays Coeur d’Alene in the consolation bracket today at 11 a.m. Borah plays Rocky Mountain in the semifinal round at 2 p.m.