By Tom Gamble, GCL South Commissioner
Moeller High School has won multiple state championships in a variety of sports, including football, baseball, basketball and volleyball to name a few. The Crusaders are the defending Division I state champs in basketball and volleyball, winning both titles during the 2017-18 academic year. But today, Moeller will attempt to do something its soccer program has yet to accomplish – earn a trip to the Di Final Four when they oppose Turpin in in the DI regional final at 3 p.m. at Lakota East High School. The two teams enter the match with a combined 33-2-6 record.
In the process, Moeller (17-1-3) looks to continue its scoreless streak in the postseason – outscoring the opposition, 20-0, in its five state playoff matches, the last a 4-0 victory over Anderson in the regional semifinals at Lebanon Junior High School on Wednesday. But it won’t be easy against Turpin (16-1-3), which advanced with a 2-1 victory against Greater Catholic League South Division member St. Xavier in its regional semifinal match on Halloween night at Monroe High School. The Bombers finished 13-4-3 this season.
Led by junior goalkeeper Cal Collins and a sound defense, Moeller has recorded a single-season record 13 shutouts this season. If victorious today, Moeller also will tie the school record for most wins in a season set back in 1994. Moeller and Turpin’s lone losses this season came in their respective regular-season finales, with the Crusaders falling to Dublin Coffman, 3-2, and Turpin losing to regular-season Eastern Cincinnati Conference champion Loveland, 4-0. The two are a combined 9-0 in the postseason, outscoring their opponents, 26-1, in those games.
Three of Turpin’s four state playoff wins have been by one goal, beginning with a 1-0 win against GCL South member Elder. The Spartans also have defeated Springboro, 1-0, in the district final before posting the one-goal victory against St. Xavier in the regional semis. Turpin’s other postseason win came against Lakota East, 2-0. Moeller has won each of its five playoff matches by two or more goals, the closest being a 2-0 triumph against Mason in the district final. Moeller last played in the regional final in 2015, falling to Mason, 1-0.
The state semifinals are set for next Wednesday, with the DI state final to be played next Saturday, November 10 at MAPFRE Stadium in Columbus – home of the Major Soccer League Columbus Crew.