Repeat Champ Soldiers Finish D4 Shutout

November 5, 2016

By Jeff Chaney
Special for Second Half

COMSTOCK PARK – There is always a question posed to a team that has just won consecutive championships – a question that is sometimes not that easy to answer.

Is it harder to win that first title, or harder to defend?

The boys soccer team from Burton Genesee Christian let its results do the answering, as it made a historic run through this year's MHSAA Division 4 Tournament.

The Soldiers capped off their second straight championship run with a 3-0 win over Muskegon Catholic Central on Saturday at Comstock Park High School.

It was the Genesee Christian’s 16th shutout of the season, and incredible seventh shutout in seven games during the tournament.

With Saturday's goal total, the Soldiers outscored their opponents 27-0 during the great run.

And leading the defensive way for Genesee Christian was senior goalie Zach Noecker, who did nothing to hurt his 0.63 goals-against average heading into Saturday's title game. He had seven saves against the Crusaders.

"This is amazing," Noecker said. "I have a great defense ahead of me, starting with (senior defender Tyler Rose). They are all phenomenal, and we are all best friends. Our goal for this postseason was to go for the shutout, because you can't lose if you don't get scored on."

A confident keeper and defense like that has made the Soldiers offense able to gamble and push a little harder, and they did just that Saturday, especially early.

In the game's first 16 minutes, Genesee Christian put two goals on the board.

The first, at the 31:58 mark, came on a beautiful corner kick by senior midfielder Cole Russell – a corner kick that found the back of the net.

The second, at 24:14, also came on a corner kick, but this one was fielded by Rose, then passed to senior forward Caleb DuPree, who headed the ball past Crusaders goalie Connor O'Neill.

DuPree scored again with just over three minutes to play in the first half on a spectacular unassisted goal.

"My coach always makes fun of me for not playing defense," DuPree said. "For the past two seasons our defense has been remarkable. They make it easy for us forwards, knowing we just have to be at the right place and time our moments. They do all the dirty work."

Great problems to have, a stingy defense and goalie, and a dynamic offense. And all this coming from a school with 114 total enrollment and 23 on the soccer team.

"This is a testament to these guys' work ethic," Genesee Christian coach Doug Anderson said. "(Assistant coach Chris Rainear) and I have a system we are trying to run, and these guys buy into it. And I'm telling you, it really works. When you get a group of guys, 23 of them, that sell out and say they will do anything to win a state championship, then you have a good chance to win."

Anderson said one of things he worried about early in the year was complacency after winning the program, and school's, first MHSAA championship in 2015.

"This was a tough one," Anderson said. "You want to get the guys motivated at the beginning of the year, and at the start of the year we had a philosophy of 'Win from Within.' And I told the guys if you want to win again, it will have to come from within yourself. And luckily I have a senior class that didn't need to be prodded too much."

Muskegon Catholic Central coach Bill Moulatsiotis said his team's lack of experience in a game of this magnitude finally caught up with the Crusaders.

"I think our inexperience showed today," Moulatsiotis said. "The gravity of the game, and the implications of what this might mean for the boys, was a lot. We tried to keep it as normal as possible, but obviously Genesee has been here before, and they knew what to do."

Click for the full box score.

PHOTOS: (Top) Burton Genesee Christian players rush to get a hand on the Division 4 championship trophy. (Middle) Soldiers forward Caleb DuPree gets a foot on the ball with MCC’s Robert Ahern defending.

Be the Referee: Soccer Offsides or Goal?

By Paige Winne
MHSAA Marketing & Social Media Coordinator

May 23, 2023

Be The Referee is a series of short messages designed to help educate people on the rules of different sports, to help them better understand the art of officiating, and to recruit officials.

Below is this week's segment – Soccer Offsides or Goal? - Listen

Today we’re on the soccer field for another You Make the Call.

Team A has a throw-in near midfield. Team A’s No. 9 is clearly in an offside position when the throw-in comes directly to her. She collects the ball and kicks it past the keeper and into the goal. What’s the call?

Should the referee:

► Award an indirect free kick to Team B?

► Award a goal kick to Team B?

► Award a re-take of the throw-in to Team A?

► Award a goal to Team A?

If you said, "Award a goal to Team A" … you are correct, despite the goal-scorer being in a clear offsides position.

The soccer rulebook states that a player shall not be penalized for offsides if she receives the ball directly from a goal kick, corner kick or throw-in. It’s a legal play – and counts as a goal.

Previous Editions:

May 16: Track & Field Exchange Zones - Listen
May 9: Girls Lacrosse Self-Start - Listen
May 2: Baseball/Softball Overthrow - Listen
April 25: Fifth-Quarter/Third-Half Rule - Listen
April 18: Soccer Referee in Play? - Listen
April 11: Softball Strikeout - Listen
March 14: Basketball Instant Replay - Listen
March 7: Hockey Overtime - Listen
Feb. 28: Baker Bowling - Listen
Feb. 21: Ski Finish - Listen
Feb. 14: Swimming Touchpads - Listen
Feb. 7: In or Out-of-Bounds in Wrestling - Listen
Jan. 31: Over the Back - Listen
Jan. 24: Competitive Cheer Judges - Listen
Jan. 17: More Lines - Listen
Jan. 10: On the Line - Listen
Jan. 3: Basketball Measurements - Listen
Dec. 13: Pregame Dunks - Listen
Dec. 6: Gymnastics Judges - Listen
Nov. 22: Football Finals Replay - Listen
Nov. 15: Back Row Illegal Blocker - Listen
Nov. 8: Swim Turn Judges - Listen
Nov. 1: Soccer Referee Jersey Colors - Listen
Oct. 25: Cross Country Tie-Breaker - Listen
Oct. 18: Soccer Shootouts - Listen
Oct. 11: Safety in End ZoneListen
Oct. 4: Football Overtime Penalty - Listen
Sept. 27: Kickoff Goal - Listen
Sept. 20: Soccer Timing - Listen
Sept. 13: Volleyball Replays - Listen
Sept. 6: Switching Sides - Listen
Aug. 30: Play Clock - Listen
Aug. 23: Intentional Grounding Change
- Listen

PHOTO: An official raises his flag during this spring's Trenton/Pontiac Notre Dame Prep game. (Photo by Chris Mudd/National Photo Scout.)