St. Xavier Soccer Beats No. 1 Team in Nation Saturday, Wins Jesuit Cup Sunday

 Photo courtesy St. Xavier Athletics

Photo courtesy St. Xavier Athletics

By Scott Springer, sspringer@enquirer.com

Before Geiser, Nathan Neal, Josh Besl and Will Watkins had scored on their kicks. The victory was the first ever for St. Xavier soccer in the Jesuit Cup.

Before advancing to the Sunday final, they defeated the top-ranked team in the nation in St. Ignatius. The team known as "Iggy" had won 61 straight.

St. Xavier never trailed in that game, taking a 3-2 halftime lead and adding a second half goal for the 4-2 final. Scoring for the Bombers were Josh Besl, Nathan Neal, Matthew Sutton and Craig Wellens.

"We handled the moment," Bombers coach Brian Schaeper said. "It's always special when you beat Ignatius with the reputation and history they have. We played with great composure and great heart. Scoring four goals against Ignatius shows the type of offensive firepower we can have."

Toledo St. John's moved on Saturday by defeating Walsh Jesuit.

Schaeper's biggest task now is to keep the Bombers grounded after beating a team that has won three straight state titles followed up by Sunday's high drama off North Bend Road.

St. Xavier started the season with a win over Lakota East and had just lost to Anderson 2-1. The Bombers schedule is always a challenge.

"We schedule the best in the state and city and right away it gives us a chance to see where we are," Schaeper said.

Following the hoisting of the Jesuit Cup, the Bombers face Sycamore Thursday.

"They won the GMC last year and didn't graduate much," Schaeper said. "We faced this test (Jesuit Cup) and right again we face another one."

St. Xavier starts the GCL-South schedule Sept. 5 home with Moeller.  Moeller is equally off to a promising start having just shut out Anderson 2-0 Saturday night. The Crusaders face Lakota West in another possible barnburner Tuesday.

Thus far, all of St. Xavier's local foes are ranked Top 10 in the coaches poll.

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