In a battle of two of the hottest squads in the area, the Olentangy girls soccer team used a pair of second-half goals, both off the foot of Taylor Novak, to notch a 2-0 Division I district semifinal win over visiting Delaware Hayes Wednesday night in Lewis Center.
The win was the seventh-seeded Braves’ 10th straight since losing to Olentangy Berlin all the way back in mid-September.
Reagan Ross set the tone for the second half with a rocket just over the crossbar a minute into the action. The shot didn’t connect, but it was a sign of things to come as the Olentangy offense, which was kept in check throughout the first half, came alive down the stretch.
Less than three minutes later, Novak scored what proved to be the only goal her team would need, collecting a well-placed cross by Addi Moore before flicking it past a leaping Josie DeRosa and into the far corner of the net at the 36:25 mark of the second half.
A left-footed shot by Kareena Wardlow almost trickled through a minute later, but the game didn’t stay 1-0 for long. Ross ripped a shot after a change of possession in the midfield and, while DeRosa punched away the initial attempt, Novak cleaned up the rebound to make it a 2-0 game with 31:10 left.
Hayes battled to the end, nearly getting a goal back with about six minutes left, but an offside call wiped away the goal and all but sealed the deal.
It was the second time in the game the 10th-seeded Pacers had a disallowed goal. The first, an indirect kick Elise Buckerfield bounced in from nearly midfield with 15:48 left in the first half, was also negated because it wasn’t touched by another player.
For the 10th-seeded Pacers, the season-ending setback snapped a 13-game unbeaten streak that helped them climb the standings and earn a share of the OCC-Capital Division crown with Big Walnut.
Next up, Olentangy will take on Olentangy Liberty for a district title Saturday at a time and place to be announced.
Olentangy Berlin 4, Big Walnut 0
The sixth-seeded Bears didn’t have any trouble knocking off the 13th-seeded and OCC-Capital Division co-champion Golden Eagles in Wednesday’s D-I district semifinal in Delaware, scoring a pair of goals in both halves to cruise into this weekend’s championship game.
Gracie Dusenberry led the charge with a pair of goals in the win while Fina Davy and Piper Davy also found the back of the net. When Fina Davy wasn’t scoring, she was facilitating, finishing with three assists.
Claire Walden, who finished with five saves en route to the shutout, and the defense took care of the rest.
With the win, Berlin will take on second-seeded Dublin Coffman in Saturday’s district final at a time and place to be announced.
Olentangy Liberty 4, Gahanna Lincoln 1
The third-seeded Patriots certainly spread the wealth, getting goals from four different players en route to a Division I district semifinal win over the visiting and 14th-seeded Lions Wednesday night in Powell.
Maddy McCort, Audrey Kalmar, Avery Hilvert and Chloe Brecht had the goals for Liberty, which led 2-0 at halftime.
Hailey Myers made five saves in the Patriot goal.
Olentangy Orange 5, Westerville North 1
Lauryn Barringer scored twice and Sophia Prime added a team-best two assists to power the fourth-seeded Pioneers to a 5-1 Division I district semifinal win over the visiting and 10th-seeded Warriors Wednesday night in Lewis Center.
All five Orange goals came in the first half, which also included tallies from Gabbi Blendick, Sadie Thompson and Prime.
Savanna Shaw anchored the defense with two saves in the Pioneer goal.
Next up, Orange will take on fifth-seeded Dublin Jerome in Saturday’s district championship at a time and place to be determined.