The Westerville North girls soccer team earned its first district championship since 2007 with a 1-0 victory over Hilliard Bradley in a Division I district final Oct. 26 at Olentangy Orange.
The fourth-seeded Warriors improved to 14-3-1 and advanced to play Dublin Coffman in a regional semifinal Oct. 29 at Westerville Central, while the 10th-seeded Jaguars finished 10-5-4.
“It still hasn’t hit me that we actually (won a district championship),” said North coach Ricky Konkolewski, whose team has outscored its first three postseason opponents 19-0. “We set this goal after last year. Everyone has that goal, but it’s pretty bold to set a goal that high when you had a .500 record (9-10-1) last year. But we did, and we thought we could do it.”
Allie Balasico scored for the Warriors with 22 minutes, 31 seconds left in the first half.
North goalkeeper Abby Markley had seven saves, including a diving stop on a penalty kick by Bradley’s Avery Jantonio with 31:45 left.
Bradley goalie Emily Keck made seven saves.
Dublin Coffman 3, New Albany 0
Goals from Simone Rivard-Roberts and Addie Vaccari in a 2:33 span of the first half helped the top-seeded Shamrocks defeat the eighth-seeded Eagles in a Division I district final Oct. 26 at Westerville North for their first district championship since 2014.
Rivard-Roberts, a Xavier commit, scored what turned out to be the only goal Coffman needed with 16:57 left in the first half.
The Shamrocks benefited from an own goal with 21:17 to play.
“I knew the ball was coming,” Rivard-Roberts said. “I had it on my left foot, so I went for it. It was slippery and I lucked out, I feel like. I tried to get the ball across my body as fast as I could and make a strike.
“A lot of us have been here a long way and it’s always been our goal to get really far. I think this is our year.”
Coffman improved to 13-1-5 and will play Westerville North in a regional semifinal Oct. 29 at Westerville Central, while New Albany finished 12-3-3 and lost in a district final for the second consecutive season.
Olentangy Orange 2, Watterson 0
The third-seeded Pioneers got a pair of late goals to beat the sixth-seeded Eagles in a Division I district final Oct. 26 at Dublin Jerome to win their first district title.
Orange, which had been a district runner-up each of the past two seasons, improved to 14-2-4 and will play Marysville in a regional semifinal Oct. 29 at Jerome.
“We just wanted this one so badly and just came in and took it,” Orange senior Sophia Leonetti said.
With 5 minutes remaining, Leonetti scored what proved to be the winning goal when she got off a shot near the net despite standing between two defenders.
Then with 1:10 remaining, Grace Poorbaugh scored off a free kick to help send the Pioneers to their first regional tournament.
“The ball was on the left and the keeper was in the middle,” Poorbaugh said. “I saw the right side and aimed it toward the right side and was hoping it went in, and it did.”
Watterson, which was a state semifinalist last season, finished 11-5-3.
“Our kids kept their heads, kept their composure,” Eagles coach Scott Dempsey said. “We left everything on the field.”
Marysville 1, Gahanna 0
The 16th-seeded Lions had beaten two higher-seeded teams to reach a Division I district final, but weren’t able to continue their postseason run as they lost to the ninth-seeded Monarchs on Oct. 26 at Jerome.
Gahanna finished 9-5-6, while Marysville improved to 13-3-3 and will play Orange in a regional semifinal Oct. 29 at Jerome.
Sydney Lee scored for the Monarchs, who won their first district title since 2013.
—Jarrod UlreyDIVISION III
Columbus Academy 1, Grandview 0
The second-seeded Vikings earned their first district title since 2013 by beating the top-seeded Bobcats in a Division III district final Oct. 26 at New Albany.
Academy improved to 14-3-2 and will play Lynchburg-Clay in a regional semifinal Oct. 29 at a neutral site. Grandview finished 14-4-1.
“It feels incredible,” said Academy coach Matt Thompson, whose team also defeated the Bobcats in MSL-Ohio Division play, 2-1 on Sept. 4. “Grandview is a very talented group. They’re well-coached. They knocked us out (of the district tournament) the last couple of years and I’m so happy. These girls have worked so hard as a group.”
The Vikings’ Katie Schiano scored with 15:30 remaining in the first half off a corner kick by Diana Ulbrich.
Grandview applied pressure in the second half looking for the tying goal, but Academy goalie Sophie Spolter preserved the win with a leaping save on Abbie Baxter’s shot with 30 seconds remaining.
Spolter finished with six saves and Bobcats goalie Addi Holcomb had one save.
“These games are always going to be competitive, always to the final seconds,” Grandview coach Bre Dominach said. “Every time we play them, it’s always a nail-biter.”