The goal for this season always was clear for Richmond-Burton’s soccer players: make it to the state final tournament.
After losing in the final minutes of last season’s supersectional, the Rockets placed signs that read “State 2022″ everywhere as a reminder of how hard they needed to work during the offseason to get where they wanted to go.
So while the Rockets celebrated winning the Class 1A Marian Central Sectional title Friday, they knew there’s still more work left to be done.
“I told them from the minute they got off the field [Friday], ‘Don’t be satisfied,’ ” Richmond-Burton coach Casey DeCaluwe said. “They’ve got one more.”
Richmond-Burton (21-1-1) will play IC Catholic (16-3-2) at 5 p.m. Tuesday in the Class 1A Concordia University Supersectional in River Forest after the Knights won their sectional title, 3-1, Friday against Marine Leadership Academy.
Tuesday’s matchup will pit the Rockets’ high-scoring offense against the Knight’s strong defense. Richmond-Burton has scored 133 goals in 23 matches, an average of 5.78 goals per match.
The Rockets have scored six or more goals in a match 16 times and have a plus-112 goal differential.
IC Catholic’s defense has helped carry it into the supersectional round. The Knights have 17 shutouts, including four in the postseason, and have allowed six goals in 21 matches.
Class 2A De La Salle scored two of those goals, while two more came from Class 1A powerhouse Quincy Notre Dame.
Richmond-Burton will rely on its top scorers, including Layne and Reese Frericks, to break through the IC Catholic defense. Both Frericks sisters kept shooting Friday in the Rockets’ sectional final against DePaul College Prep until they finally scored, and they’ll need to employ that same mentality in order to get on the board Tuesday.
“We’re going to leave everything out there,” Layne Frericks said. “What we did on [Friday], we’re going to do the same thing [Tuesday]. We’re going to work as a team.”
The Rockets feel like they’re ready for this moment. Much of their schedule was created so they saw different styles of play and learned how to attack different schemes.
Richmond-Burton has waited a whole year for this match, and players know what the goal is, but the Rockets aren’t treating it any differently than all their other matches.
“We just have to keep our heads in the game and stay strong,” Reese Frericks said. “We just need to play the way we have all season and we should come out with the result.”