By Chris Parsons / Staff Writer
CORBIN — The Corbin Redhound (13-7-1) soccer team is one step away from the spot that head coach Armando Cima nearly guaranteed his team would reach at the start of the season — the final eight of the state tournament.
Earlier in the season, Cima admitted that the bold prediction raised a few eyebrows when it came to those close to the program. After a 2-0 loss to North Laurel in the 49th District finals, you would think that even he was wondering if his team would make it that far.
Close to two weeks after the North Laurel loss, Cima and company are set to take on Perry County Central (11-6-1) with a spot in the final eight at stake. Cima still thinks his team is good enough to get the win, but given the way teams play at this point of the season, he said it won't exactly be easy.
“I really don't know a lot about them, but I know they have a couple of decent forwards that have scored a lot this season,” Cima said. “I think they started out the season with a rough stretch, but they have gotten better as the season has progressed.
“I know they play a very direct style and they're kind of a hard-nosed team and a working team for sure,” he added. “What I do know is that it will be a battle because it’s that time of the year when teams do what they have to do to try and get the win.”
The most important thing for Corbin is the fact they are coming off a huge win over North Laurel in the region finals in which the Redhounds were able to earn some redemption for the loss in the district championship. Those two teams needed two overtime periods, as well as penalty kicks to decide a winner. The momentum from that win and the fact the Commodores are 0-2 against 13th Region foes (North Laurel and Whitley County) this season should go a long way for Corbin.
“The kids were excited that they got another shot at North Laurel in the region,” Cima said. “I was happy with the way they played and I thought going in to that match that we were the better team, despite the previous loss to them.
“I think the kids are ready for this match and I expect the momentum from the win over North Laurel to carry over,” he added. “When you add to the mix that we are hosting this match, I think everything plays in our favor quite well. But you still have to come out and play well and that's what we will try to do.”
Today's match is scheduled for 7 p.m. at the Redhounds' home field which is located on the campus of Corbin Primary School.