CHARLESTON -- Charleston Catholic coach Sam Fox is still expecting the best from his team, which could be bad news for everyone else in Class AA-A.
The Fighting Irish (20-0-2), who finished No. 1 in the final state coaches association rankings, meet No. 2 Williamstown (15-1-3) at approximately 5:30 p.m. today at Ripley High School in the Region 4 boys high school soccer final.
The regional winners advance to the state tournament, set for Nov. 2-3 at the YMCA Soccer Complex in Beckley. (See Page 2B for regional pairings.)
Catholic, the three-time defending state champion, has extended its streak of 52 matches in which it hasn't lost a game in spite of patchwork lineup.
"We've been pretty fortunate,'' said Fox. "We've only had 11 starters on the field about seven or eight games. When you're winning, nobody really takes note of those problems.
"It's been a difficult season. I've had to move people out of their normal positions. The boys have adapted and played where I've asked them to play. That's a sign of good maturity on the team.''
It also helps when you have one of the top players in the state as Catholic does in senior Sam Revercomb, who has scored 33 goals, second-most in the Kanawha Valley.
Opponents, though, can't focus solely on Revercomb with senior William Scriptunas (20 goals), freshman Joey Trupo (14) and senior Adam Fox (eight) capable scorers. Catholic senior keeper Mitchel Thorsteinson and senior defender Domenic Cippollone have keyed a defense that has yielded just 19 goals in 22 games and pitched 10 shutouts, including the last three games.