CARROLL — Bloom-Carroll’s boys’ soccer team took care of what it could control Thursday night in regard to the Mid-State League-Buckeye Division championship.
The Bulldogs just didn’t get the help they needed.
A five-goal first half highlighted by three in the final 10 minutes helped the Bulldogs dispose of Circleville, 8-0, in their regular season finale. But Bloom-Carroll, which needed Teays Valley to lose to Hamilton Township to win the MSL-Buckeye title, had to settle for second place after finding out about the Vikings’ 2-1 win.
“I told the kids, ‘Control what you can control tonight,'” Bulldogs coach Robb Ingram said. “Whatever happens, happens. (I said) it would be bittersweet if it doesn’t come our way, but all the same it’s something to be proud of.”
The Bulldogs (11-3-2, 4-0-2) finished second in the league despite going undefeated for the second year in a row. Ingram said the Bulldogs will refocus to get ready for next week’s district tournament.
“It’s always nice to bring hardware home, no matter what it is,” Ingram said. “We take a lot of pride in winning the league. It would have been a great thing to have. We just move on from here. Maybe that gives us a little more incentive to do better in the tournament.”
Nick Hedges, who returned to the field for Bloom-Carroll after missing two weeks, made his presence felt early. After being whistled for offsides three times in the first few minutes, Hedges timed a run right and was hit with a pass for a breakaway, which he put into the net for an early 1-0 lead.
Hedges scored twice, and Thomas Robinson had a hat trick to pace the Bulldogs.
“I thought we looked really sharp,” Ingram said. “We got Hedges back tonight, which really helps us out. He’s been missing the last two. This is the way we should play all season, and we look really good when we do.”
Nick Casto, Robinson and Hedges scored within five minutes of each other at the end of the first half to help the Bulldogs pull away and go into half-time with a comfortable lead.
After the break, Robinson, McCoy Patino and Robert Daniels scored as the Bulldogs notched their eighth shutout of the year.