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Kings of the South

Kings of the South

Saturday July 31, 2011 - Heat wins Southern Conference, Advances to Semi-Finals.

Laredo Morning Times
Published: Sunday, July 31, 2011 4:07 AM CDT
What had looked like a heartbreaking end to an incredulous season turned out to be just another evening of magic for the Laredo Heat.

The Heat nipped the Mississippi Brilla 2-1 in sudden death in the Premier Development League’s Southern Conference final in Mississippi on Saturday.

Adan Villavicencio’s converted kick in sudden death sealed the deal after 120 minutes of game time and penalty kicks were not enough to decide who would be advancing to next weekend’s PDL Final Four.

Laredo converted all seven of their penalty kicks, while the Brilla went 6-for-7.

The Heat improved to 13-3-2, 41 points.

The Brilla, fresh off their first playoff win on Friday, ended their season at 13-3-2, 38 points.

Laredo conquered the Brilla amidst plenty of adversity.

The Heat played a man down since the 38th minute and without head coach Israel Collazo, who was ejected in the 75th minute.

Laredo jumped out early on Felix Garcia’s goal off an assist from Armando Begines in the 11th minute.

The Heat held off the Brilla early and often throughout until the final minutes of compensation time in the second half, when Mississippi snuck a goal in in the fifth minute of stoppage time to salvage a little more life for its season.

Mississippi scored again in the 97th minute off a head-in from Mat Luak in the first overtime, and prospects looked gloomy before Laredo answered with an opportune score when Begines took advantage of a misplay from Brilla keeper Zach Torp for a header that knotted it up in the 117th minute to force penalty kicks.

After all PK’s were converted, each of the first round kickers’ of sudden death converted as well before the Brilla finally missed, setting the stage for Villavicencio.

The Heat are scheduled to play their PDL semifinal on Friday against a to-be-determined opponent at a location still to be decided.

The championship game is scheduled for Saturday at 7:30 p.m