Blue Devils remain focused on task at hand
By Bryan Bonato Special to The News-Sun October 16, 2012 8:45PM
Warren's Daniel Szczepanek (left) gets congratulated by teammate Sean Kirwan after Szczepanek scored the first goal of their regional soccer game against Grant at Warren. | Michael Schmidt~Sun-Times Media
Updated: November 18, 2012 6:36AM
Daniel Szczepanek and Auner Solis each scored twice as host Warren routed Grant 7-0 on Wednesday in the semifinals of the Warren Regional boys soccer tournament.
The Devils (16-5-3) will play Round Lake at noon on Saturday for the title. Grant finished 4-17.
Szczepanek scored in the fifth and 19th minutes to make it 2-0. It was 3-0 at halftime, and the game was shortened by 8:23 when freshman Lucas Gieb tallied in the 64th minute to make it 7-0 and invoke the automatic game-shortening rule.
“The first tourney game, we wanted to get the ball rolling and get the momentum going our way,” said Szczepanek, who will play next year at Marquette. “Now that it’s going our way, we have to take it step by step.
“We approach it like a ladder, where each step is the next game. Our focus is on Saturday, not on state.”
Last year, Warren reached the Final Four of the big-school tourney and has a big fourth-place trophy sitting in the school to show for that great effort.
“We have high expectations. Conference championships and tournament championships are great, but it comes down to postseason success,” said Warren coach Jason Ahonen. “That’s what people remember.
“They don’t remember that we won conference two years ago or that Lake Forest won it last year. They remember who went to state. That’s still our goal.
“Today was just a step in that process.”