TopLaxRecruits.com, Posted 5/29/13
St. Ignatius Prep (CA) recently claimed its fourth straight West Catholic Athletic League championship by defeating Bellarmine Prep, 9-8.
Senior Chad Bell (Boston University) scored the winning goal as the Wildcats finished a 21-1 season. They are No. 10 in this week’s TopLaxRecruits.com Rankings.
St. Ignatius has defeated the Bells (16-6) in the final all four years the tourney has been held. St. Ignatius coach coach Chris Packard noted that this title was the most difficult.
“Bellarmine scratched and clawed for every loose ball and their guys made plays all game long,” Packard said. “Two of our top scorers were held pointless. It was a good, hard-fought battle and there will be many more like that in the years to come.”
Packard said the key to the team’s success this year was good leadership and a strong work ethic.
“It was due to senior leadership and the team’s dedication to one another that we were so successful,” he said. “We had 18 seniors, and their impact has been indelible.
“I am as proud of this group of young men as I have ever been of a team. They were selfless in their pursuit to go undefeated and never wavered from their commitment to one another. I am convinced that is why we prevailed in four of the five one-goal games we played in this year and had the success that we had.”
Packard’s team was one win away from a perfect season. The loss came to mighty Chaminade (the eventual Catholic High School champion on Long Island), a heartbreaking 5-4 defeat.
Packard said the Wildcats have established themselves as a legitimate power, but feel they need to beat a top Eastern team to be mentioned among the top teams in the country.
“Yes, but we still haven’t cracked the code,” he said. “Until we beat the best we will remain categorized as a good western team. We have made significant strides but we are not there yet. We will be in time.”