By Josh Brown
WEST CHESTER — The Tippecanoe boys soccer team entered its third straight regional tournament knowing that Alter — the team that had ousted it the past two years — would not be a factor.
Instead, the Red Devils found a new obstacle standing in the way.
Summit Country Day — which had won the Division III state championship three years in a row before moving up to D-II this season — ended the Red Devils’ season in the D-II regional semifinal round Wednesday night as the Silver Knights scored a late goal to claim a 2-1 victory at Lakota West High School.
Summit improved to 13-7 on the season and will face McNicholas — a 3-2 winner over Bexley Wednesday night and the team that defeated Alter 1-0 in overtime in the district final — in Saturday’s regional final at noon at Lakota East High School.
Eli Rawlings gave Summit a 1-0 lead at halftime with a goal late in the first half. Early in the second half, though, Summit committed a handball in the box, giving the Devils an opportunity — and senior Ben Halsey cashed it in, converting a penalty kick to tie the score at 1-1.
But with 5:23 remaining, Summit’s Doug Simpson drove in the game-winner, holding on from there to post the victory.
The Red Devils finished their time in the Greater Western Ohio Conference as the three-time American North Division champions, winning the title outright all three years they were members of the league. Next year, Tippecanoe will join the newly-forming Miami Valley League. It was also the third straight regional tournament appearance for the Devils — Tippecanoe had fallen to Alter in the regional final the previous two seasons.
And in the district final, senior Michael Pfister recorded an assist that gave him 18 on the year, not only making him the GWOC’s overall leader in assists but also breaking Tippecanoe’s single-season record. The previous mark had been 17, set in 1985.
Tippecanoe finished the season 16-3-2.
Contact Josh Brown at (937) 552-2132, or follow @TroyDailySports on Twitter.