It would have been easy to think last spring was Loyola’s best chance to win the soccer program its first-ever state championship.
It wasn’t to be.
However, that Ramblers team did a lot, earning a historic sectional title before losing to Conant in a close supersectional match.
But coach Craig Snower and company were’t satisfied.
Good for them.
Although the Ramblers graduated goalie Carly Stevens and a host of other talented players, this year’s team looks as good as ever.
That was evidenced Sunday when Loyola won its third Pepsi Showdown in four years. The Ramblers beat Lake Forest 1-0 on Colleen McShane’s goal to improve to 15-0-1 and rise to No. 2 in the rankings. Naperville North held on to the top spot at 12-0.
McShane’s goal was the game-winner, but the Ramblers continue to be known for their defense. Goalie Brittany San Roman and defenders Corey Burns and Annie Manganaro have teamed up for 15 shutouts in 16 matches.
Here’s guessing Loyola gets the No. 1 seed at the Niles North Sectional later this week. New Trier will be No. 2. If the seeds hold, soccer fans will be treated to an epic match.