TIPP CITY — Brookville’s varsity soccer team battled the state’s No. 4 ranked Tippecanoe Red Devils in the upper bracket of the Division II, Region Eight, Southwest One, district semifinal Tuesday night in Tippecanoe City Park.
When all was said and done, Tippecanoe walked away with a 9-1 victory under the recently instituted “Mercy Rule” that ends a game once a team gains an eight goal advantage.
The Blue Devils fought hard and kept Tippecanoe’s high-powered attack at bay for the first nine minutes. Dominic Mendiola broke the scoreless deadlock with goal to put the Red Devils up 1-0 at 30:54 in the first half.
Brookville maintained staunch defensive play after the initial goal.
Tipp forward Landon Haas stunned Brookville by launching a direct kick from midfield near the left sideline that had enough juice to sail all the way into the net to give the Red Devils a 2-0 lead with 20:35 remaining in the first half.
Caleb Ransom took Brookville hostage by posting Tipp’s third goal of the night at the 16:26 mark.
The Blue Devils answered with a goal by Dominic King with 11:33 left in the first half, but from there the flood gates opened.
Tippecanoe scored on a direct kick from the left side by Haas that A.J. Jergens headed into the goal at 10:39 to make it a 4-1 game.
With 6:45 left in the half Carson King boosted Tipp’s lead to 5-1 and with just over 30 seconds on the clock King scored again off an assist by Haas to give the Red Devils a 6-1 halftime advantage.
When play resumed Haas netted his second goal of the night with 37:38 remaining and scored his third goal one minute later off an assist by Cameron Smith.
On a rebound kick that struck the post and came back into the field of play Jergens hammed the ball into the net to make it 9-1 as the game ended under the new Mercy Rule at 30:06.
“Part of playing in Division II is to challenge ourselves because every team we play is bigger than we are,” said Brookville coach Dylan Harris. “Tipp is a good team and has a really good program. They’ve been in a few district finals the last few years.
“We want to challenge ourselves and if you want to be the best, you have to compete with the best and that is what we are aiming to do,” Harris added. “This is just the start for us. We are a young team and we will be back next year.”
Tippecanoe lost to Oakwood 3-1 last year in the district final and lost by the same score to eventual state champion Cincinnati Wyoming in the 2021 district final.
Brookville concludes its year at 11-5-4. Tippecanoe improved to 17-1-1. The Red Devils will face Oakwood (15-0-5) in the district final Oct. 28 at a site to be determined.
Reach Ron Nunnari by email: [email protected].