Westminster School at Oak Mountain on to finals
By BAKER ELLIS / Sports Editor
HUNTSVILLE – The first half was tense and scoreless, but the top-ranked Westminster School at Oak Mountain Knights (15-1-2) broke their 1A-3A state semifinal game wide open in the second half with four goals to blank Bayside Academy 4-0 and advance to the state championship for the third consecutive year.
Westminster, ranked No. 1 in the state in class 1A-3A, has now beaten the other two teams in the top three in the state in their journey to the championship game. The Knights defeated No. 2 Indian Springs, county foe and defending 1A-4A champion, in the second round of the state tournament by a final of 3-0 to advance to the Final Four. In the Final Four game, Westminster faced No. 3 Bayside Academy and used four second half goals to crusie into the championship game.
After a scoreless first half, Westminster came out firing in the second half. Two goals by senior captain Jack Stein gave the Knights a comfortable lead before Caleb McNaughton and Alex Poore each added a goal in the half as well to give Westminster an insurmountable advantage.
Westminster is a quick, skilled club that controls the ball well. It is a strong defensive team, and has only given up 12 goals total in 18 games and did not give up a single goal through the entire month of March. The only game the Knights have dropped this season was to resident 7A power Hoover by a final of 3-2.
On the other side of the bracket, No. 10 Faith Christian edged No. 6 Madison Academy in penalty kicks to advance to the 1A-3A state championship. The Knight will take on Faith Christian tomorrow night at 8:30 in Huntsville and try and bring home the state title, an achievement they have fallen just short of each of the last two seasons, losing in the state championship in 2014 and 2013. Westminster will look to reverse that trend tomorrow night.