Derrick Webb, Staff Writer
McDERMOTT — For the first time in school history, Waverly’s girls soccer program can call itself a conference champion.
The Tigers (12-3, 9-1 SOC II) wrapped up their conference slate Tuesday with a 4-0 win at Northwest, clinching a share of the Southern Ohio Conference II title.
“Honestly, the feeling I have right now is bittersweet,” junior Loren Moran said. “As a team, we’ve been going for an SOC title since we’ve been a program and to get one just feels amazing. Easily one of the most memorable moments in my soccer career.”
Moran scored once in the victory, pushing her team-leading goal total to 23.
“Honestly, just having great players consistently every year, coming up and returning, helps a lot with my successes,” Moran said. “Also having played with multiple players before high school on club teams makes everything easier because they know my style of play. It’s also helpful to have such a strong back line. Really, I owe all of it to the 10 other players on the field.”
Fellow junior Zoiee Smith scored a hat trick in Tuesday’s win. That makes eight goals since she returned for a win over Wheelersburg on Sept. 26.
“This feeling is indescribable,” Smith said. “We’ve worked so hard to get to this point. It’s definitely something we’re all going to remember for a really long time. The fact that it’s the first in school history … I’m so thankful to be apart of such an amazing thing.”
With one goal down, the Tigers still have one regular season date left with McClain on Oct. 9.
“This win is very special for us. The ladies work so hard and get along so well. It’s nice to see them get this championship,” Waverly coach Chris Murphy said. “This has been one of their goals since the beginning of the season and it feels good to win this for all the athletes who have committed their sweat, pride and passion for this program.”
In the Southeast District Tournament draw, the Tigers drew a No. 3 seed. They’ll host Jackson in a Division II sectional semifinal on Oct. 15.
“We just have to keep playing the way we are right now,” Smith said. “We’ve got everything going our way. We just have to keep our heads on and keep going. We’ve got something special going on here.”