OHIO CITY, Oh - On Saturday afternoon, the Saint Ignatius Wildcats would capture yet another District Championship, scoring a commanding 7-0 final over the Avon Lake Shoremen at Pat Catan Stadium in Strongsville, Ohio. The Cats continued their streak of brilliance as they ran rampant in their three district matches, scoring 32 goals and not conceding a single one.
Saint Ignatius Wildcats 12, Barberton Magics 0
The Wildcats added a medley of players to the scoring charts with twelve different goalscorers while keeping yet another clean sheet. The more impressive fact; the Wildcats also did not allow a single shot the entire game.
The Wildcats stepped up to truly start their playoff journey on the right foot with an incredibly prolific kickoff, not to mention Josip Rimac breaking the record for the most assists in a game, reeling in seven total assists throughout the 80 minutes.
Many players had also scored their first goals, including Matthew Mays, TJ Fraser, Collin Folds, Ernie Vargo and Carter Snyder. Overall, the Wildcats showed complete dominance over their opponents and gave themselves a proper boot to enter the next round.
Saint Ignatius Wildcats 13, Bedford Bearcats 0
It was another utterly dominant showing from the Wildcats, somehow toppling their previous game’s record with yet another avalanche of goals. Many stellar stat lines from that match as Giancarlo Sarti finished with two goals and two assists. Nolan Spicer, Zsombor Onodi and Antonio Morini finished with two goals and one assist, respectively. Josip Rimac and Matthew Mays both had a goal and an assist and Nathan Trickett finished with two goals himself.
Yet again, the Wildcats incredible backline fancied themselves a clean sheet, not conceding a single shot for the third game in a row (as they had also shut out Dublin Jerome completely on their defensive third). Another great showing and an ora of power surrounding them entering the District Championship.
Saint Ignatius Wildcats 7, Avon Lake Shoremen 0
This past Saturday, the Wildcats would once again step toe-to-toe with the Avon Lake Shoremen, who they had previously played in the season opener, winning with a commanding 6-0 scoreline to set the tone for the season.
The Wildcats would start strong as Zsombor Onodi would poke one past the keeper just about five minutes into the contest after receiving a lovely through ball from Nolan Spicer into the area.
Just a few minutes later, the Wildcats would knock in another one. Luciano Pechota played a ball to his right into the feet of Nathan Smith, making an overlapping run from his usual fullback position. Smith took a controlling touch and seemingly tried to send in a cross. His cross ended up being a shot on target, as he struck the ball into the top right corner of the goal and past the keeper for a prompt 2-0 deficit for the Shoremen to attempt to erase.
More brilliant football was yet to come, as Zsombor Onodi played a beautiful ball across the surface of the 18-yard box to Josip Rimac, who gracefully chested it down into his possession and grazed it across the body of the keeper with magnificent composure. 3-0 to the good now.
The fourth goal would eventually find its way home midway through the first half, as a wonderfully weighted ball would be played into Nolan Spicer. He brought it to himself and chipped one past the keeper, even though a fairly dangerous collision. The Wildcats were now four goals clear of their opposition.
Right before the end of the half, Spicer would score another one. An overdone cross would fall to the feet of Will Armsworthy on the right-hand side of the 18-yard box. Armsworthy sent in another cross, which was headed to the outside of the box for Nolan Spicer. Spicer had a crack-off balance that would hit off the inside of the right-hand post and roll past the keeper for yet another goal.
The Wildcats went into the half 5-0 up. Their defense is a significant part of the offense, which greatly combatted and adapted to the Shoremen’s aggressive aerial approach.
The other two goals would be scored in the later part of the second half, as Owen Sullivan scored off of a rebound from a solid save, and Zsombor Onodi scored after a brilliant effort from Trickett in the middle as he won the ball and played a deliciously-crafted through ball to Onodi. Onodi would round the keeper, rushing off his line and sprint to the goal line for an easy tap-in.
Not long after, the Wildcats would be crowned District Champions for the 21st time in the program’s history (all 21 of these coming under the reign of Head Soccer Coach Mike McLaughlin ‘85). The Wildcats will be in action on Wednesday night to take on Sylvania Southview in the Regional Semifinals. Stay tuned, and Go Cats!