Eagles, Hawks soar to regional titles - Republic-Times | News

Eagles, Hawks soar to regional titles

By on May 18, 2016 at 12:40 pm
The Gibault girls soccer team hoists the regional plaque following Saturday's 3-2 win over Althoff.

The Gibault girls soccer team hoists the regional plaque following Saturday’s 3-2 win over Althoff.

Longtime cross-county soccer rivals Columbia and Gibault may be on a collision course once again.

Both teams captured Class 1A regional titles over the weekend to advance to the Althoff Sectional, which begins Wednesday. With one more win apiece, the two teams would battle for a sectional title on Saturday.

The Eagles topped Wesclin last Tuesday, 3-0, and Freeburg on Friday, 4-1, to win the Columbia Regional crown.

Freshman Chloe Graff was the shining star of the regional notching two goals in each game for the Eagles. Megan Leblanc scored the other goal in the win over Wesclin, with Jenna Jackson, Kalee Jackson and Mackenzie Lowe registering assists.

Against Freeburg, Graff netted two more goals and Blair Wittenbrink added two of her own for good measure. Wittenbrink also had an assist, as did Madelyne Juenger.

“She’s mentally tough. She’s physically tough. She’s quick. And to have that as a freshman, it makes the next three years really exciting,” Columbia head coach Jamey Bridges said of Graff.

Columbia (14-5-2) has won five straight games entering the sectional round. Bridges attributes that to the team getting healthier of late, as well as experience and confidence gained during what was a tough regular season schedule.

The Columbia girls soccer team celebrates after winning the regional championship Friday night at CHS. For more photos from the game, visit www.republictimes.net/photo-store.

The Columbia girls soccer team celebrates after winning the regional championship Friday night at CHS. For more photos from the game, visit www.republictimes.net/photo-store.

“We’re getting healthy. That’s the big thing,” he said.

Wittenbrink leads the team in scoring with 15 goals and five assists. Graff is second on the team in goals with nine. Juenger has seven goals and 10 assists.

Columbia will take on Mater Dei at 4:30 p.m. Wednesday at McKendree University in Lebanon.

Joining them in the same sectional is Gibault, who rolled past Anna-Jonesboro last Wednesday, 9-1, and edged Althoff on Saturday, 3-2, to claim the Anna-Jonesboro Regional crown.

Senior Carley Olson, who has battled a lingering left quad injury much of the season, muscled through the regional round in a big way. She notched a goal and an assist against Anna-Jonesboro and scored all three goals for the Hawks on Saturday.

Also scoring last Wednesday for Gibault were Abby Hasenstab with two goals and an assist, Maddie O’Neill with two goals and an assist, Caralyn Papenberg with two goals and Abby Phelps and Nicole Swindle with a goal apiece. Phelps added two assists.

On Saturday, Olson’s goal off a corner kick tied the game in the 49th minute. Her penalty kick goal in the 68th minute proved to be the game-winner in the 3-2 win over Catholic rival Althoff.

Goalie Abbie Meyer recorded eight saves in the win. Hasenstab had two assists and Phelps also had an assist.

Next up is another Catholic rival, Marquette, at 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday at McKendree. The Hawks dropped a 5-0 contest to Marquette on April 26, but Olson did not play in that game.

Hasenstab leads the Hawks with 10 goals and nine assists. Olson has nine goals and two assists.

O’Neill has seven goals and four assists.

Waterloo shares MVC title
Waterloo battled to a scoreless tie with longtime nemesis Triad to claim a share of the Mississippi Valley Conference title last Tuesday.

The Bulldogs faced the Knights at home in a showdown for the MVC crown. The two teams battled to a scoreless tie at Triad earlier this season, and it was a similar result again this time.

After a combined 180 total minutes of regular and overtime play against each other in the two games, neither team could net a goal. Triad won its final MVC game, meaning both finished with identical 8-0-2 conference records.

The two teams could meet again in the Class 2A sectional round.

The ‘Dogs ended the regular season with a record of 15-3-3.

“Our team has played some solid defense all year,” Waterloo head coach Chad Holden said. “Our backline of Sierra Berg, Dani Maurer, Sydney Ratz and Heather Elliott have been great all year and our goalie, Bailey Bosler, has come up with some big-time saves when needed.”
Waterloo has only allowed 11 goals all season.

“Only five teams have scored on us, so I couldn’t be more proud of our backline,” he said.

Sydney Luedeman leads the team with 20 goals and nine assists. Erika Lloyd has 15 goals and eight assists. Mollie Zeisset has nine goals and nine assists.

Waterloo began its postseason Tuesday night defeating Herrin 11-1 in the Class 2A Marian Regional. They will play in the regional final on Friday night.

“We do know that the postseason can be very unexpected, so we need to be ready for every game that we play,” Holden said.

Corey Saathoff

Corey is the editor of the Republic-Times. He has worked at the newspaper since 2004, and currently resides in Columbia. He is also the principal singer-songwriter and plays guitar in St. Louis area country-rock band The Trophy Mules.