Senior center Caleb Rau scored two goals for the Sylvania Northview High School hockey team as the Wildcats defeated St. Charles 3-1 in a state semifinal March 7 at Nationwide Arena.
Central Ohio teams are 0-8 in state semifinals since 2003, when the Central/Southwest District was granted a berth at state. Upper Arlington got the closest to reaching the state final, losing 3-2 to Parma Padua in 2007.
This was the second meeting this season between St. Charles and Northview. The Cardinals defeated Northview 5-2 on Dec. 28 en route to winning the Cuyahoga Falls Walsh Jesuit Warrior Shootout at Kent State. In the loss, Northview was playing without three starters — senior left wing Jacob Koback, senior defenseman Kooper Carter and senior goaltender David Marsh.
“We played more our style the first time we played (the Wildcats),” said St. Charles coach Rob Sangster, whose team had won 17 consecutive games entering the semifinal. “We knew they were a very good team. They capitalized on their opportunities and we didn’t have the same opportunities that we did the first time we played.”
Northview (17-13-1) advances to the state final against Cleveland St. Ignatius (29-4-5) or Mentor Lake Catholic (27-8-3) at 2 p.m. March 8 at Nationwide Arena. St. Charles finishes 34-4-2.
St. Charles outshot Northview 21-16 and did not have a penalty until 28.4 seconds left in the game. Cardinals senior goalie Alex Ward had 13 saves and Marsh had 20.
St. Charles trailed 3-0 before senior forward Danny Schirtzinger scored with 1:34 left to play. Senior defenseman Patrick Brennan and junior forward Clayton Klosz assisted.
Senior right wing Cody Estrel had the other goal for Northview.