The 2012 IHSA Class 2A & 3A Boys Soccer State Finals are set to unfold in Frankfort this weekend, as Lincoln-Way North High School hosts the culminating matches of the season on Friday and Saturday, November 2-3. The 2012 tournaments mark the 41st annual season of the Boys Soccer State Finals and the fifth of the three-class system, while Lincoln-Way North is in its second year as host.
Friday’s Class 2A semifinals feature two-time state champ Peoria Notre Dame and Wheaton Academy matching up at 11 a.m., while 2009 winner St. Viator meets Urbana at 1 p.m. The Class 3A semifinals will unfold during the evening session, with Sandburg and Gurnee Warren facing off at 5 p.m., followed by first-time qualifier Stevenson matching up against 2011 runner-up Naperville Central at 7 p.m. All eight Class 2A and 3A state final tournament matches on Friday and Saturday will be webcast live with full video and audio free of charge on IHSA.tv, as Rusty Silber and Mike Karberg bring viewers the action from Frankfort.
PEORIA NOTRE DAME IRISH (20-2-2)
Mike Bare has established the Irish as one of the top programs in the state during his six-year tenure as head coach that now includes five state final trips and a pair of state titles (2008, 2010). The Irish are undefeated against in-state opponents this year and have plenty of state final experience on their roster, including senior forward Drew Whalen (34 goals, 23 assists) and senior midfielder Alex Garcia (20 goals, 28 assists). Junior Justin Buck has taken over at goalie and is averaging under a goal per game (.79 GAA).
WHEATON ACADEMY WARRIORS (21-6-0)
Wheaton Academy makes its fifth state tournament appearance in school history and first under fifth-year head coach Jeff Brooke. The Warrior offense runs through junior midfielder Grant Stoneman (28 goals, 18 assists) and senior forward Gareth Flynn (17 goals, 16 assists). Senior Spencer Graf has split time in goal this season, but will likely be between the pipes at the state tourney and will have a defense in front of him that has helped shutout 13 opponents this season, including three in the postseason.
ST. VIATOR LIONS (20-3-3)
Legendary coach Mike Taylor returns St. Viator to the state tourney for the eighth time in his career and the first time since the school claimed the Class 2A title in 2009. The Lions enter battle-tested, having won their last four postseason games by single goals, and senior goalkeeper Michael McGrath (.88 GAA, 49 saves) has allowed a goal or less in 20 matches this season. A balanced St. Viator offense is led by senior midfielder Jackson Owens and junior midfielder Nick Winter, who each have 10 goals on the year.
URBANA TIGERS (20-2-0)
Urbana makes its third state final trip in school history and first since 2005, all of which have come under long-time head coach Randy Blackman. The Tigers have a dynamic offense that has averaged four goals per match this season and was shutout just once. Senior midfielder Miguel Fierro (21 goals) and senior forward Jonathan Lukusa (20 goals, 11 assists) represent two of the team’s four double-digit scorers, while senior goalkeeper Brian Summers has allowed just 10 goals in 19 matches this season.
SANDBURG EAGLES (18-5-3)
Sandburg has won four state championships in seven previous state final trips and now second-year head coach Desi Vuillaume looks to make his mark on the storied program. The Eagles defense, which includes senior goalie Adam Zehme (.62 GAA, 73 saves), has been especially tough in the postseason, allowing just a single goal in five matches. The offense is led by senior midfielder Zack Biel (24 goals, 14 assists), who averages a goal for nearly every four shots he takes, and senior forward Kevin Kroll (15 goals, 20 assists).
GURNEE WARREN BLUE DEVILS (19-5-3)
Warren makes back-to-back state final appearance under fifth-year head coach Jason Ahonen and is looking for its first state tourney win since 2006 after placing fourth a year ago. Senior forward Auner Solis (22 goals) has been the Blue Devils top scorer this season, while senior midfielder Nick Wegrzynowicz (14 goals) netted a goal in the third-place match a year ago. Sophomore RJ Hill (.56 GAAA, 76 saves) and senior Nick Hathuc (.89 GAA, 110 saves) have split time in goal this season, contributing to 10 Warren shutouts.
STEVENSON PATRIOTS (18-4-1)
Stevenson coach Mark Schartner has won over 350 matches in his 26 seasons leading Stevenson and breaks through in 2012 to lead the Patriots to the state finals for the first time. Stevenson has a defensive-minded group that has notched 16 shutouts this season and at one point won six consecutive matches, including their first three postseason games, by 1-0 margins. Senior Quentin Low (.40 GAA, 160 saves) is a standout between the pipes, while senior Michael Weinstein (10 goals) and senior midfielder Toshiki Niimi (4 goals, 8 assists) pace the offense.
NAPERVILLE CENTRAL REDHAWKS (22-1-0)
Troy Adams led Naperville Central to the state championship match a year ago, where they fell 1-0 to Morton, and the third-year coach has his team poised to return again. The RedHawks have played with urgency in 2012, allowing a goal or less in every match except their lone loss to rival Naperville North. Senior goalkeeper Mike Pavliga has been in goal for most of the team’s 15 shutouts and has allowed just eight goals this season. Senior forward Pat Flynn (29 goals, 9 assists) has already doubled his goal total from a year ago, many of which have been setup by senior midfielder Mike West (17 assists).
Lincoln-Way North HS (Frankfort)
Friday, November 2
Session 1 - Class 2A
Semifinal #1 - 11:00 a.m.
Peoria Notre Dame vs. Wheaton Academy
Semifinal #2 - 1:00 p.m.
St. Viator vs. Urbana
Session 2 - Class 3A
Semifinal #1 - 5:00 p.m.
Sandburg vs. Gurnee Warren
Semifinal #2 - 7:00 p.m.
Stevenson vs. Naperville Central
Saturday, November 3
Session 3 - Class 2A
Third-Place - 11:00 a.m.
Championship - 1:00 p.m.
Session 4 - Class 3A
Third-Place - 5:00 p.m.
Championship - 7:00 p.m.
All matches available live on www.IHSA.tv
Currently no radio broadcasts for this event
RESULTS & BOX SCORES
IHSA Boys Soccer Page
$6 per session
HISTORY & RECORDS
2012 Class 2A State Series
2012 Class 3A State Series
Record Book & Past Champions