MORRIS — The Morris boys soccer team continued its dominance of the Class 2A Morris Regional on Saturday, defeating Joliet Catholic Academy, 5-0, for the championship. The Redskins (10-8-3) guaranteed themselves a winning season with the victory, and outscored their opponents, 14-0, on their home field en route to capturing their sixth regional title in coach David Valdivia's seven years at the helm.
Morris senior Conner Shaw had scored five goals in the 9-0 semifinal win over Kankakee on Tuesday, so the JCA defense paid special attention to him Saturday. He took that attention as a chance to create scoring opportunities for his teammates.
The Redskins' first goal came with 29:35 left in the first half, when junior Ernesto Buenrostro kicked in a ball that was deflected by the JCA goal keeper. They scored their second at the 22:40 mark, when Connor McGlynn scored with an assist from Chris Martinez. Then, Shaw assisted on a pair of goals by fellow senior Kaleb Hefford, the first with 8:55 left and the second with 13.8 seconds left in the first half as Morris took a 4-0 lead into halftime.
In the second half, Morris continued to dominate the action, and Shaw was able to muscle through three defenders to put in the final goal with 34:12 left in the game.
"In the first half, they were marking up Shaw," Valdivia said. "When that happens, he gets more opportunities to get assists ,and that is exactly what happened.
"In my seven years of coaching, I have never coached such a great group of young men. The seniors really stepped up and made the difference. They did everything we asked at practice the last few days and it paid off. They didn't take this game for granted and played with class. I want to thank all the fans who came out to cheer us on, too."
Morris now advances to the Chicago Brooks Sectional, where they will take on Bremen in the semifinals on Wednesday at 4 p.m.