HOWLAND, Ohio (WKBN) – The Howland boys soccer team is heading to Columbus to play for a state championship. This is the first time for a boys soccer team in Trumbull County.
The Howland Tigers rallied past Lexington in the State Semifinals Wednesday night.
“Once we got to school yesterday, on Friday, everyone was supporting us. It just really settled in that this is the biggest moment of our lives,” said Gabriel Altawil, one of the players on the team.
This is the first time since 1952 that a Tigers sports team is competing in a state championship.
Before they head down to Columbus, the Tigers had a send off with lunch at Leo’s followed by a police escort.
“It seems like a lot of the community’s gotten really behind it. I think they’re just really good, hard working kids. Soccer in our area typically hasn’t been incredibly successful at the state level. I think that they kind of show that if you work hard and you train right, you can really achieve anything you’d like to do in life,” said head coach Brian Stiles.
Howland will take on Tippecanoe Sunday night. Stiles says Tippecanoe has the upper hand when it comes to size, but he thinks his Tigers are ready for the challenge.
“I mean, size doesn’t always matter in soccer. It’s the size of your heart and how much you’re willing to put into it and if we just play the soccer we know how to play, I think we have good chances,” Stiles said.
If the Tigers win Sunday, it will be the first time for any Howland team to bring home a championship trophy.
WKBN will have full coverage from Columbus.