The Walsh Jesuit girls soccer team received a trophy and a banner from ESPN Rise on Tuesday night at the team's season-ending banquet at Emidio & Sons Banquet Center in Cuyahoga Falls.
Walsh finished first in the ESPN Rise FAB 50 poll, the third time the Warriors have won a national championship in girls soccer. The 2010 team joins the 2000 and 2006 teams that won state and national titles. Walsh's 2001 and 2004 teams also won state titles.
Walsh won the Division I state title in November with a 3-0 victory over Pickerington North, completing a 19-1-3 season.
“It was a very special evening,” Walsh coach Dino McIntyre said. “It was nice a closure to everything for this season.”
The Warriors starters were seniors Kelsey Smigel, Erin Flynn, Alexis Gable, Brianna Kanz and Elizabeth Bollinger, juniors Katie George, Kaylee Semelsberger, Alyson Smigel and Christen Westphal, sophomore Sandra Yu and freshman Maddy Anzelc.
McIntyre said the girls each received an engraved medal and t-shirts from ESPN Rise. The evening included several photo opportunities and joyous conversations.
“We had all of our girls, parents, families and coaches in attendance,” McIntyre said. “ESPN Rise gave us this huge banner with our school colors and also a plaque commemorating our third national championship.
“The trophy, it looks like one of those BCS type of trophies [you see in college football].”
Walsh outscored its final 15 opponents by a 63-1 margin, including 30-0 in seven tournament games. Strongsville (20-2-1), which lost to Walsh in the state semifinals, finished fifth in the ESPN Rise poll. Jackson (15-2-2) was No. 31 and Medina (13-3-3) was No. 34.
ESPN Rise also named Yu, Medina senior goalkeeper Taylor Burke and Strongsville junior midfielder-striker Ashley Meier to their 50-player All-America team.