SOUTHEAST LOUISIANA SCHOOLS DOMINATE SEMIFINALS
The division one and division three state soccer championship matches are being held in New Orleans next weekend and they will feature a distinct, near unanimous New Orleans flavor with seven of eight teams hailing from the greater New Orleans area.
In the division three boys semifinals Saturday, fifth-seeded Ben Franklin shocked top-seeded Westminster Christian 2-1 in overtime at Pan American Stadium.
The Falcons overcame adversity to advance. The Crusaders took the early lead on a goal by Chris Laborde just five minutes into the match. It stayed that way until the final five minutes of the match when the Falcons tied it in dramatic fashion, scoring on a goal by Vanja Popovic to send the match to overtime.
In the extra period, Joshua Hellstrom scored on a header by Joshua Hellstrom on a cross feed from Popovic to provide the margin of victory.
With the win, Ben Franklin improved to 12-6-1 and the Falcons advance to the state title match Friday at 7 p.m. against Northlake Christian at Tad Gormley Stadium.
The second-seeded Wolverines advanced to the title match in dramatic fashion as well, beating Episcopal of Baton Rouge 4-2 on penalty kicks after the two sides finished regulation, two overtimes and a golden goal overtime scoreless after 110 minutes of play.
In the penalty kick phase, Northlake Christian goalkeeper Jeffrey George stopped two shots to secure the win. The Wolverines missed their first penalty kick before making four straight with Sam Beck putting the deciding goal in the net.
With the win, the Wolverines improve to 23-4-2 and move on to face Ben Franklin in the division three final Friday night at 7 p.m. Episcopal finished its fine season 14-11-1.
In division one, form held, forcing a much-anticipated rematch between local powers.
Top-seeded and two-time defending state champion Jesuit scored two early goals and four in the first half and coasted to a 4-1 victory over fourth-seeded Dutchtown to move into the final.
Stephen Cabos had a huge evening, turning a hat trick, to give Jesuit it's 28th win this season without a loss (and two ties).
Cabos scored very early to put Jesuit up 1-0 before Brendan Jackson added another goal to make it 2-0.
Dutchtown made a match of it, scoring on a Ryan Reid goal in the 30th minute to make it 2-1. It was the first goal against Jesuit in nearly two months, the first in 13 matches against the Blue Jays.
The Blue Jays answered quickly with Cabos scoring a pair of goals one minute apart late in the first half to put the match away. The second half was uneventful.
Dutchtown finishes its season 20-5 while Jesuit moves on to face second-seed St. Paul's in the title match next Saturday night at Tad Gormley Stadium.
The second-seeded Wolves advanced with a solid 3-1 victory over third-seeded Lafayette 3-1 at Hunter Stadium in Covington.
Will Gutterman scored a pair of goals for the Wolves, both on headers while Jordan Daigle booted home a third goal to pace St. Paul's.
The Wolves led 2-0 at the half before Blythe Fredrick scored early in the second half to cut the deficit to 2-1 but Gutterman answered nearly immediately with his second goal to give St. Paul's a comfortable lead and its eventual winning margin.
The Mighty Lions finish the season 23-4-2 while the Wolves improved to 30-2 with the victory.
Jesuit beat St. Paul's 1-0 for the St. Paul's Holiday Classic title. The two teams played a pre-season scrimmage which St. Paul's won by a goal though it did not count on the team's records.
STATE SOCCER FINALS SCHEDULE