CENTENARY, Ohio — Isaiah Lester, almost at times single-footedly, led the Gallia Academy Blue Devils to their best season in soccer history.
Now, Lester is being rightly rewarded on the all-Ohio squad.
As announced on Sunday by the Ohio Scholastic Soccer Coaches Association, the senior striker Lester landed second-team Division II all-state soccer honors.
This past season, Lester scored easily a team-high 34 goals, and made first-team all-Southeast District — after earning Honorable Mention all-district last year.
In addition, on the team front, this was an historic season for Gallia Academy.
The Blue Devils did enjoy a school record for victories in a single season with 11, as GAHS posted an overall record of 11-5-1.
Gallia Academy also captured its first conference championship in soccer, sharing the Ohio Valley Conference title with South Point.
Both clubs, which went 7-1 in the OVC, rallied from two-goal halftime deficits to win by one goal apiece on the other’s home pitch.
The OVC was in its first season of soccer as a league.
Finally, the Blue Devils defeated Waverly in a thrilling penalty-kicks shootout to win their second consecutive Division II sectional championship — the only two sectional crowns in program history.
Lester was one of six Southeast District players on the Division II second team, as Christian Brown of Chillicothe — the Southeast District Division II Player of the Year — made first team.
Joining Lester on the second team were Nathaniel Castle of Fairfield Union, Ben Dehmlow of Marietta, Jake Helton of South Point, Blake Pittser of Miami Trace and Zed Strahler of Warren.
Only South Point did not reach the Division II Southeast District tournament.
Kettering Alter, the Division II state champion, captured two of the top three awards — including Parker Simms as Player of the Year.
Ron Fernandez for Kettering Alter was named Assistant Coach of the Year.
The Coach of the Year honor went to Matthew Wunderle of Ravenna.
Paul Boggs can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2106
RECOMMENDED FOR YOU