Soccer success is nothing new to St. Thomas Aquinas High School or coach Craig Ewing. However, this year the Saints took it to another level.
The Saints went undefeated in Eastern Kansas League play, finished with a program-best 20-1-0 record and became the first girls team in the state to win five consecutive state championships. They achieved that feat with a 2-1 overtime victory over Blue Valley Southwest on Saturday at Emporia High School.
“In last year’s state championship, we won 5-0. So to do it this year when it took overtime and was a thrilling game — that changes the whole thing,” Ewing said. “When you play against a very good team like Blue Valley Southwest, it makes it more special.”
The Saints took an early lead when Kelly Sweeney scored in the eighth minute, but Sarah Murphy answered with an equalizer for the Timberwolves in the 34th minute.
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After a scoreless second half, Jamie Kutey sealed the victory with a golden goal 20 seconds into overtime. It was the fourth of the week for Kutey, who according to Ewing has scored in each of the nine state tournament games she has played in thus far. Kutey is verbally committed to Marquette University.
Blue Valley Southwest finished with a 13-6-2 record.
6A: BV Northwest repeats
Blue Valley Northwest continued the Eastern Kansas League’s success by defending its state title in Class 6A. The Huskies defeated Maize, 6-0, in the title game on Saturday at Hummer Sports Park in Topeka.
The Huskies outscored their opponents 23-3 in the playoffs, which included four shutouts. Both goals that Blue Valley Northwest allowed came in a 3-2 victory against Blue Valley West in the quarterfinals. The Huskies finished with an 18-2-1 record.
“We have an amazing defense with our three girls back there who are so comfortable with the ball and comfortable with each other,” Pribyl said. “They start the attack and then the offense scores, which is a good plus.”
Shawnee Mission West bounced back from a semifinal loss to Maize and placed third in Class 6A with a 1-0 victory against Washburn Rural. The Vikings finished with a 15-6-0 record.
4-1A: Miege finishes third
Bishop Miege entered the Class 4-1A state tournament riding an eight game winning streak, which included five straight shutouts.
Although the Stags could not continue the trend, they walked away with a third-place finish in their first state appearance since 2003.
Miege fell 3-2 in overtime to eventual champion Trinity Academy in the semifinals, but responded with a 5-2 victory against Bonner Springs in the third-place game. The Stags finished with a 13-7-0 record.