The girls’ soccer team of Unity Christian High School in Hudsonville, Mich., won its seventh Division III state championship in eight years with a 2-1 victory over Flint Powers Catholic.
The victory was particularly sweet for Crusaders Coach Randy Heethuis, who had lost 1-0 to Flint Powers in the state title game last year, ending a record streak of six consecutive state championships.
“We knew we’d be solid again this year. We had eight starters back from the team from last year,” Coach Heethuis said. “The girls were hungrier after getting knocked out in the final game last year, so that provided some motivation.”
In the final game, Casandra Besteman scored the go-ahead goal with fewer than four minutes remaining in the game. The Crusaders held on for the win.
“It was great team chemistry between the girls we had returning and the girls we added, and everything just worked out from there,” said Heethuis, a member of Fairway Christian Reformed Church in Jenison, Mich.