Prep Soccer: Willmar advances to championship
FAIRMONT -- The northern Cardinals of Willmar ruled at Fairmont Tuesday, bashing the southern Cardinals 5-0 in the boys soccer Section 2A semifinal round.
Willmar (14-3-2) will play at Mankato against Mankato West on Thursday for the championship and ticket to state, the time to be announced.
Goalie Charlie Trochlil, a sophomore back-up riding a hot streak in the post-season, got the shutout with 11 stops.
Graham Dahl (2), Junior Beccara, Cesar Jimenez and Tim Rogers scored goals. Rogers and Handerson Tevalan each had a pair of assists.
The 14th victory ties the 2008 team which won four straight games in postseason to reach the Class A quarterfinals. The win was also a payback for a crushing 3-2 loss to Fairmont at Willmar in last year's quarterfinal round.
No one expected this to be a blowout. Fairmont was 16-1 coming in and the No. 1 seed but No. 5 Willmar (14-3-2) had played a tougher schedule week in and week out.
"We stuck with our own game which met focusing on their key players," said Willmar head coach Jeff Winter.
"I didn't really have to coach, just watch. We got to every loose ball. We wanted it more, I think. We were calm and relaxed and I think maybe they were a little overconfident."
Dahl struck first from the right side of the penalty box kicking to the far bottom corner of the back post.
Tevalan was credited with playing an exceptional game in the middle. The junior attacker retreated toward the center of the field to better feed Dahl and others.
Rogers also had a big game as did the defenders of the Willmar zone.
No. 3 West beat No. 2 Mankato East 4-0. East was defending 2A champ and the state runner-up to Prairie Seeds Academy.
Willmar and West (14-4-1) didn't meet in the regular season.
Willmar 5, Fairmont 0
Willmar (14-3-2) 2 3 -- 5
Fairmont (16-2) 0 0 -- 0
FIRST HALF - Wil: Graham Dahl (Tim Rogers) 13:00 ... Wil: Junior Beccera (Rogers) 15:00
SECOND HALF - Wil: Cesar Jimenez (Handerson Tevalan) 56:00 ... Wil: Dahl (Tevalan) 69:00 ... Wil: Rogers (Tevalan) 72:00
SHOTS ON GOAL - Willmar: 18 ... Fairmont: 11
GOALIE SAVES - Willmar: Charlie Trochlil 11 ... Fairmont: Matt Tennyson 13