Columbus Scotus coach Jon Brezenski was going to do all the talking.
Brezenski didn’t like how the Shamrocks played the first half of the Class B boys state soccer final on Monday night, which they found out during their halftime huddle at Morrison Stadium.
“I gave it to them a little bit,” Brezenski said.
The second half was then proof of message received.
No. 2 Columbus Scotus took just over three minutes to break a scoreless tie after the break, and senior Noah Schacher had that goal and another as the Shamrocks beat No. 4 Omaha Skutt 3-0 to defend their Class B championship.
“After that first half, we were a little down as a team,” Schacher said. “We were thinking, ‘All right, this is going to be a lot harder than we thought.’ But we came out, and once we got that first goal everyone lifted their head up, and we were like, ‘We’re going to do this. We can accomplish what we came for.’ ”
It completed a 16-game winning streak to finish the season for Columbus Scotus (19-3), which allowed just nine goals during that stretch and beat three teams that would advance to Class A district finals.
But Skutt (13-5) had the Shamrocks out of sync for the first 40 minutes as they worked into a cool north breeze.
“We just didn’t play well, didn’t possess the ball like we do,” Brezenski said. “We’re a possession team and we just didn’t do it.
“We challenged them at halftime, and I tell you what, they came out right away and boom: got the goal, executed what we told them to do at halftime to go up 1-0, and then it’s just our game from there.”
Well, after Skutt had a prime chance to go ahead first.
The SkyHawks had a free kick from just outside the box when Christian Healy fired over the crossbar with 37:40 left in the game. The Schacher goal at the other end came at 36:47 off an assist from Cole Harrington.
“That’s the way soccer goes,” Skutt coach Justin Zabawa said. “The game can change that quick. They were able to take advantage of their opportunity, and it changed the game. It changed what we wanted to do, and we couldn’t really find a rhythm after that.”
It definitely wasn’t coming after Schacher scored again with 14:58 left. And the Shamrocks had their fifth Class B state title since 1997 locked up after a Jake Bos goal with 12:45 to go.
“It feels great,” Bos said.
Unlike at the half, when even the team leaders stood quietly as Brezenski delivered what he called a rare halftime “chewing.”
“Nobody said anything,” Brezenski said. “I told them I didn’t want them to say a word.
“They were maybe a little bit tighter than they normally are, and it was maybe the emotion of the game — big crowd, playing Skutt, big rival — so we just kind of got away from it the first half.”
Columbus Scotus (19-3) ............................. 0 3 -- 3
Omaha Skutt (13-5) ................................... 0 0 -- 0
Goals: CS, Noah Schacher 2, Jake Bos.