BOYS SOCCER Willis gets 5 goals, nears record
The Mooney ace led an 8-0 win over JFK, and now has 152 career goals.
By BILL SULLIVAN
VINDICATOR SPORTS STAFF
STRUTHERS -- The soccer game featured a top goal scorer on each team, but only one found the back of the net. And he found it over and over again.
Kiki Willis, who is zeroing in on becoming the top goal producer in Ohio prep soccer history, scored five times as the Cardinal Mooney boy's team blanked Warren JFK 8-0 Tuesday.
Willis has 36 goals this year and 152 in his career. The Ohio record is 154 career goals.
Meanwhile, JFK (6-4-3) senior Kyle Schimley, who set the Eagle season record of 18 goals on Saturday, was stymied by the Mooney defense throughout the Steel Valley Conference match.
While Willis led the Mooney attack, he was quick to deflect credit to junior midfielder Zack Hernan, who ignited the offense with three assists and many perfect passes.
"We moved the ball well," Willis said. "Zack Hernan controlled the midfield and opened things up for everyone.
"The defenders made runs from the back; Zack did a good job distributing the ball."
With the game just five minutes old, Hernan took a through ball from Willis and scored his seventh goal of the season from 12 yards out.
Two minutes later Hernan hit Willis with a high pass. Willis, who was about 18 yards out, rifled the ball in off his head for a 2-0 count.
"Zack beat a kid on the right side and crossed over," Willis said of his deft header.
Mooney (11-0-1, 6-0 SVC) continued to win nearly every free ball and used a left-footed goal by Dom DiPasquale for a 3-0 lead.
JFK goalie Brian Wolnik, a four-year starter, made two saves to keep it within three goals at the break. Wolnik had 16 saves in the game as the Cardinals out-shot the Eagles, 38-2.
Willis scores again
Early in the second half Willis scored again on a header, this time from 13 yards to make it 4-0.
"On the other half of the field, Dom [DiPasquale] crossed over and I put it in with my head," Willis said.
After Willis made it 5-0, junior Nick Lutz took a Hernan pass in traffic and his shot gave the Cardinals a 6-0 lead.
"He sparks everyone on this team," Hernan said of Willis. "He makes everyone around him play better; when he's on the field we all step it up."
Willis scored twice more in the waning minutes.
JFK defense falters
"We played awful," JFK coach Lou Cali said. "They had a lot to do with it. I've seen Mooney about four or five times this year and that's as well as I've seen them play.
"They're obviously much better than we are -- that's why they're a great team and we're not there yet."
Mooney, top-ranked in the state, is coached by Lenny Krispinsky.
"Every game is important," Krispinsky said.
"We had some things to work on. The one thing we had been working on was playing aggressive. Playing every game like it is the state championship game."