Liberty wins third straight regional final over Coffman
Taylor Scott’s goal with 9 minutes, 39 seconds remaining in the first 15-minute overtime period lifted the Olentangy Liberty High School boys soccer team to a 2-1 win over Dublin Coffman in a Division I regional final Nov. 2 at Westerville Central.
The win marked the third consecutive season that Liberty has defeated Coffman in a regional final.
The Shamrocks defeated the Patriots 1-0 on Oct. 1 on their way to winning the OCC-Central Division title.
“Coffman is a class team and they’re the best in central Ohio,” said Liberty coach Rick Collins, whose team improves to 17-3-1. “They gave us everything we could take. It was back and forth. We had so much momentum in the first half and they had the better of play in the second. It was a battle. Every 50-50 ball was contested. It was guys just giving everything they had.”
The winning goal came off a Devin Collins’ free kick just outside the box.
“Against a team like this, it just takes one mistake and they capitalized,” Coffman coach Steve Watts said.
Liberty’s Donny Deep opened the scoring with 30:53 left in the first half and the Patriots led 1-0 at the half before Coffman’s Ben Kinney tied the game at 1 with 23:06 left in the second half.
The game remained tied through regulation, leading up to Scott’s game-winner.
Liberty goalie Sam Nelson and Zaborski each had six saves.
The Patriots, who won the state title last season, will play Mason in a state semifinal Wednesday, Nov. 6.
The state final is Saturday, Nov. 9 at Crew Stadium.
Coffman finished the season 16-3-2.
“We both deserved to be here, that was clear on the field,” Watts said.
Watterson 2, Coshocton 1 (OT)
The Eagles defeated Coshocton 2-1 in overtime in a Division II regional final on Nov. 2 at Zanesville to capture their second regional title in program history.
Watterson improved to 17-4 overall and will play Cincinnati Indian Hill in a state semifinal on Nov. 6.
In overtime, midfielder Michael Gilbert served a corner kick into the box and defender Sam DeCocker headed the ball just underneath the crossbar to give the Eagles the victory.
The Eagles took a 1-0 lead in the first half on a goal by forward Sam Magee, before Coshocton tied the game less than three minutes later.
Goalkeeper Trevor Funk had seven saves to earn the victory.
“Going into overtime, we talked about how we had been in this position before and knew what we needed to do to win, and we felt confident we could win this game if we continued to play the way we played in the second half,” said forward Paul Mokrzan, whose squad beat DeSales 1-0 in overtime in a district final on Oct. 26. “In the second half, we were the more collected team and we had a lot more motivation and desire to win the game than the other team had, so we just carried that over into overtime until we were able to score a goal to beat them.”
— Aaron Blankenship
Worthington Christian 2, Berlin Hiland 0
Worthington Christian will compete in its ninth consecutive state tournament after beating Berlin Hiland 2-0 in a Division III regional final Nov. 2 at Zanesville.
Senior forward Sam Condon scored both goals for the Warriors, who will play Cincinnati Summit Country Day in a state semifinal at 7 p.m. Nov. 6 at a site to be announced.
“I thought we controlled the center of the field better than we have the last couple games,” coach Dan Roads said. “That kind of play in the midfield set us up to be more confident.”
Goalkeeper Jake Kress made four saves for the Warriors, who improve to 15-3-2. Hiland finished 14-4-3.
Worthington Christian, which lost to Summit Country Day 3-0 in a state semifinal last season, tied the Silver Knights at 2 on Aug. 24. Summit Country Day beat Springfield Catholic Central 1-0 in a regional final Nov. 2 at Bellbrook to improve to 15-2-4.
“Summit beat us last year so hopefully we can get over the hump against them,” Condon said.
Condon, who has 24 goals and 15 assists, scored off a pass from junior forward J.J. Phillips late in the first half against Hiland.
Then one minute into the second half, Condon scored again.
— Jarrod Ulrey