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St. Francis Desales claims state soccer title in dominating fashion

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COLUMBUS -- No. 1 Columbus St. Francis DeSales defeated Bay Village Bay 4-0, in the 2017 OHSAA Division II boys soccer state championship match Saturday at MAPFRE Stadium to finish the season undefeated, DeSales first undefeated season since 1992. With the 4-0 shutout victory, DeSales outscored their seven postseason opponents 38-0.

After a number of scoring chances early in the first half, DeSales (22-0-1) broke the 0-0 tie when junior Michael Cockerell got one passed the Bay (17-5-1) keeper, Brent Hull, from 25 yards out with 23:29 left in the half.

Over the course of the next 28 minutes of game action, DeSales added three goals, all of which were assisted by senior midfielder Hector Gomez. The three assists for Gomez is an OHSAA Division II championship game record. Nick Fuchs added two of the three goals, which ties the OHSAA record, while Christian Gomez, Hector's younger brother, had the third.

With the win, DeSales now has seven (2015, 2014, 2009, 1997, 1992, 1986) OHSAA boys soccer state championships, second behind only Cleveland St. Ignatius' eight. This was the Bay Rockets seventh trip to the OHSAA state finals, with a record of 2-5. The two teams have now met four times (2015, 2014, 2009) in the Division II title game, with DeSales coming out on top each time.

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