COLUMBUS — For the entire Tippecanoe soccer team and coaching staff, this one was for the Community.
For Red Devils junior Landon Haas, it was for “Dad”.
The Red Deils won their second D-II boys state soccer title in five years, defeating Richfield Revere 2-0 Saturday at Historic Crew Stadium.
And if Haas seemed driven over the last three weeks to experience a state championship with his teammates, there is good for reason for that.
His father, Dan Haas, was diaganosed with cancer.
“I remember being in the cancer center and we talked about that,” Haas said. “That it would be really good if we could do something like this. This was for dad. Everything today was for dad.”
Haas was already a special player, but consider he had the only goal in a district championship win over Oakwood, both goals in the regional championship win over Summit Country Day and the game-winning goal in a double overtime win over Bishop Hartley in the state semifinals Wednesday.
So, it was only fitting it would be Haas setting the tone Saturday with shot from 35 yards out less than 10 minutes into the game.
From the left side, drilled it into the far post, leading to an eruption from the Tipp crowd and stunning the Minutemen.
“Same as left game,” Haas said. “I was about 35 yards out. I did it last game, I just figured I would do it again.”
It was his 33rd goal of the season to go with 25 assists.
And none have meant more.
“I know these last couple weeks have been pretty special for Landon and his dad,” Tippecanoe boys soccer coach Joel Slyman said. “His dad was able to be here today to watch him play. That says it all.”
So, when Haas talks about a dream season, he literally means it.
“We had talked about how cool it would be to have a moment like this,” Haas said about him and his father. “This one was for dad. Everything today was for him.”
And as always, Haas didn’t fail to deliver.
Sports Editor Rob Kiser can be reached at [email protected]