Lisle overpowered by Quincy Notre Dame in final
Updated: October 29, 2011 10:08PM
It was the end of a long title drought and a start to a new one after Saturday’s Class 1A boys soccer state title game at the Corn Crib in Normal.
Quincy Notre Dame (20-6-2) won their first state championship since 1985 with a 2-0 win over Lisle (20-6), and the Lions fell short in their attempt to defend last season’s title.
”I want to tip my hat off to them,” Lisle coach Kevin Perez said. “I’m still proud of these guys. Doing it again is not easy. Coming back this far, it’s a little bitter, that’s all.”
Two second-half goals by Quincy senior Alex Rinella accounted for all the scoring on Saturday, and the 5-foot-11 forward made sure he made up for what he called a subpar performance in Friday’s semifinal.
“It feels unbelievable,” Rinella said. “We’ve been saying one goal since the beginning of the season, and we finally reached our one goal. Last night I played pretty poor, so I was like ‘I’ve got to put ‘em away tonight. It ended up I did.”
Rinella found the back of the net first with 34:08 left in the second half. Fellow senior Andrew Allen deflected a pass from Billy Dickey which Rinella converted into a tie-breaking goal.
Rinella scored again from 30 yards out with 14:44 left in the game to all but end Lisle?s chances.
“Defensively we weren’t in the right spots,” Perez said of the two goals. “We weren’t there to close down on the players. Second place is still great, but it’s a little bitter for the seniors.”
The emotions on the field following the award ceremony ranged from ecstasy to heartbreak. Quincy players raised their first-place trophy with fans as Lisle huddled as a team in the North goal.
According to Lisle goalkeeper Kazim Khan, it is not Saturday’s final score that left the Lions feeling empty but instead the fact that their seniors would never take the field together again.
“The only reason we’re all so heartbroken is we’re all going to miss each other,” Khan said. “That’s my family. This is the end of some of our soccer careers, but I’m glad I ended it with my guys.”