Eagles soar to sectional title

The Columbia girls soccer team poses with its sectional title plaque on Friday night. (Corey Saathoff photo)

The Columbia High School girls soccer team had experienced heartbreak each of the last three years in the sectional final. The Eagles made amends Friday night, and there were tears of joy.

Madelyne Juenger, a senior who missed the final penalty kick during last year’s sectional final loss to Marquette and took part in each of those season-ending defeats, scored two goals in a 3-0 win over Althoff at home.

Juenger’s second goal came from 30 yards out and gave Columbia a 2-0 lead early in the second half. Reagan Mauch’s goal added an exclamation point with just more than a minute remaining.

“The seniors have lost three straight years in the sectional in penalty kicks,” Columbia head coach Jamey Bridges said. “To have the girl that missed the penalty kick last year in this game, it’s very special to see her do this. It was beautiful. I’m just so happy for the team.”

Goalkeeper Rylee Iorio made four saves for the shutout.

With the win, Columbia (19-2-1) advances to the Class 1A Quincy Super-Sectional, where it will face host Quincy Notre Dame (21-1-1) at 5 p.m. Tuesday night.

Quincy Notre Dame has outscored its opponents 35-1 this postseason. Columbia’s defense has allowed just seven goals all season.

“We’re confident,” Bridges said. “We’re good.”

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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.
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