SHAWNEE TOWNSHIP — Shawnee had its way against Wapakoneta in Thursday’s Division II boys soccer sectional final at Shawnee.
The Indians came out firing from the start and their defense smothered Wapakoneta’s offensive attacks, en route to a 7-0 victory.
With the win, Shawnee (13-2-1) will play next Monday in a district semifinal against Elida with game time set for 5 p.m. at Elida. Elida defeated Liberty-Benton Thursday, 2-0, in its sectional final.
Wapakoneta ends its season 8-5-3.
For the game, Shawnee out-shot Wapakoneta 12-2.
“We’ve played the WBL (Western Buckeye League) schools once through. … We know the caliber of team that we are,” Shawnee head coach Ryan Quatman said. “It’s sometimes difficult to come in and to be patient. That’s what we’ve really been working on – getting ready for this game. This is the one (game) we’re focused on. We had a lot of practices on ‘waiting for the right moment’. Some of these teams can give you opportunities, because they want to counter rather quickly. We want to keep the ball as long as we can. The opportunities will come. We were ready for something like this today.”
It didn’t take long for Shawnee’s patience to pay off.
Less than four minutes into the contest, Jake Miller received a nice feed from Anthony Best, which Miller promptly pushed the ball past Wapakoneta goalkeeper Christian Mowery (five saves) to give the Indians the early 1-0 lead.
That goal by Miller tied him for the all-time scoring leader in school history.
Then the moment came.
At the 26:27 mark of the first half, Jake Miller took a penalty kick.
Miller drove his shot to the right side of the outstretched Mowery for the goal, pushing the Shawnee advantage to 2-0. That goal made Miller, a junior, the all-time scoring leader in school history.
“It’s really exciting to see,” Quatman said about Jake Miller. “You sometimes forget that he’s a junior. We have him for another year.”
Shawnee wasn’t done.
At the 22:45 mark of the first half, Shawnee’s Matteo Fusillo took a shot from the top of the box, that sailed to the right of Mowery, extending Shawnee’s lead to 3-0.
Shawnee scored once more before the half.
At the 9:38 mark, Sam Tenwalde got his foot on the ball inside the box to push the Shawnee’s lead to 4-0.
In the first half, Shawnee took eight shots on goal – scoring on its first three shot attempts. Wapakoneta mustered just one shot on goal in the first 40 minutes of action.
Shawnee came out strong to start the second half.
At the 23:28 mark of the second half, Brayden Ward got a nice pass from Austin Miller and then drove a shot from the right outside corner of the box for a goal, that pushed the Shawnee lead to 5-0.
The Indians were not finished.
A little more than three minutes after Ward’s goal, Ward got yet another opportunity.
The senior Ward got a foot on a ball that bounced off a Wapakoneta player, and then drove it into the back of the net, giving his team a 6-0 lead.
With five minutes left to play, Jake Miller put the exclamation mark on the game with his third goal on the night.
Miller drove a shot from 25 yards out to round out the scoring.
“If I’m being honest, I was not expecting it to be 4-0 at half,” Wapakoneta head coach Keith Rambin said. “I was shocked. …. But I wasn’t shocked at how good Shawnee was. I was just shocked that we didn’t keep up like we thought we would be able to. Shawnee’s a great team. There is no doubt about that.”
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