WICHITA — The Louisburg Wildcat soccer team made school history at the Class 4-1A state tournament, defeating Rose Hill 3-0 for third place.
The Wildcats brought home the third-place trophy, leaving state with a top-three finish for the first time in the history of the program.
Treston Carlson, Colin McManigal and Cade Gassman scored in the first half for the Louisburg Wildcats. The defense took care of the rest at Stryker Sports Complex on Saturday, Nov. 7.
Louisburg finished the season with a record of 16-2-0. Rose Hill, the No. 2 seed, was 16-3-1.
Louisburg lost to Bishop Miege in the state semifinals 2-0 on Friday, Nov. 6.
Bishop Miege (10-5-3) defeated Wichita-Trinity Academy (13-7-1) by a final of 3-1 to capture the state title Saturday, Nov. 7. Wichita-Trinity Academy advanced to the state championship game with a 2-0 victory against Rose Hill on Friday, Nov. 6.
“What a difference 24 hours makes,” Louisburg coach Kyle Conley said. “We lose a tough game against Bishop Miege last night, but then respond so well today. The boys were really upset last night after the game, but we kept telling them you can still make history in the program and you can still get your plaque.
“We used that as our motivation for today,” Conley said. “As the Purple sea showed up (as they always do) for the game, we used that as motivation. We worked too hard to let down our school, our community and our families. We also spoke about being one of only six teams that can end their season with a win.”
It was a great run for the Louisburg Wildcats, Conley said, a historic one at that.
“How about those Wildcats,” Conley said. “The boys did so well and worked so hard for this. I couldn’t be prouder of this group of young men. What a fantastic ride and what a fantastic journey.”
Scouting the semifinal game between Wichita-Trinity Academy and Rose Hill, the Wildcat coaches saw a weakness they could exploit in the third-place game.
“I watched three to five games on both Trinity and Rose Hill, but didn’t see Rose Hill’s weakness until last night,” Conley said. “When they pushed forward, they sent five to six guys into the attack and they were in a straight line, which left a 20- to 30-yard gap between their back line.
“We had our attacking midfielders sit, and then we would attack their center backs,” Conley said. “Our sitting and letting them take some space allowed us to then counter with speed. I think it was the difference, and our boys executed it perfectly.”
Carlson put what proved to be the only goal Louisburg would need into the back of the net just 10 minutes into the third-place match against Rose Hill. Gassman had the assist.
Just a few minutes later, the Wildcats doubled the ante, making it 2-0 on a goal by McManigal.
Louisburg would tally one more goal in the first half on a shot by Gassman for a 3-0 lead.
The Louisburg Wildcats were pushing the offensive attack against Bishop Miege. Despite several good chances, Louisburg could not get the ball in the net.
With less than 15 minutes to play in the first half, Bishop Meige scored to break the tie.
Bishop Miege put another shot in the net in the se cond half for a 2-0 lead.
Members of the Class 4A-1A state quarterfinal champion, regional champion and league champion Louisburg Wildcats are Mack Newell, Michael Seuferling, Hunter Rogers, Haden Yeager, Isaac Guetterman, Carter Stuteville, Will Finestead, Austin Jamison, Jaden Vohs, Weston Frank, Braden Yows, Luke Faulkner, Treston Carlson, Logan Faulkner, Dacey Wieland, Caleb Shaughnessy, Kellen Richardson, Dylan Armstrong, Gavin York, Reece Jones, Dagon Klugman, Ethan Ptacek, Jordan Brown, Hunter Moore, Colin McManigal, Cade Gassman, Andrew Brown, Michael Deterding, Tobias Espina Roca, Owen Barber, John Powls, Brock Varns, Nicholas Holiday, Ethan Showatler, Caden French, Aidan Cannon, Grady Barbour, Matthew Sword, Jackson Olson and Cooper Anglin.
The Louisburg Wildcats are coached by Kyle Conley and Bobby Bovaird. Team managers are Emma Christy and Olivia Barber.