Bellbrook focusing on semifinals with party plans set


BELLBROOK — It did not take long after their win in the regional final for Bellbrook players to remember what it was they had just earned.

A chance to compete in the Division II state semifinals and be only two wins from a state championship was a great feeling for everyone involved. As the team got together in its post match huddle after Thursday’s game, though, the next round was not what was being discussed aloud as everyone gathered together.

In the moment there were more important matters to celebrate with one another. After all, slip and slide parties are that much fun to plan. And Bellbrook is going to have one after the season.

“That slip and slide party may be a bit more exciting,” Jacob Umina said.

What started with a story request to head coach Vince Molseed morphed into party planning. During a team practice following a disappointing outing in game late in the season, Molseed explained to his players how the program has grown from its infancy and what he has seen along the journey. As Molseed continued speaking, he said he saw his players respond as he told them about the year-to-year progression he has witnessed starting back with the players that helped get the program grounded through to his current team.

The next day his team wanted to hear another story, but Molseed said he did not have anything planned. Instead, a sudden request for a slip and slide was made as the activity for the day. As the team pushed for one to be brought in, Molseed said he made a deal with his team.

“I told them that if you win the region, I’m going to buy you a slip and slide and we’re going to have a slip and slide party,” he said. “So when the season is over, we’re going to have that party.”

Thursday’s 16-14 win against Bishop Fenwick earned the Golden Eagles their first regional title. While it appears the team is happy to have its after-season plans set, the number of sticks and gloves thrown into the air as everyone ran onto the field at the final buzzer was more for the joy of accomplishing something no team before them even had earned the chance to win.

Bellbrook may have never had the opportunity at advancing to this stage of the tournament previously, but Molseed said it became a goal which did not seem to be unreasonable that this team could eventually attain.

“I don’t know that I necessarily look at this as a benchmark because I think they believed they could do it,” he said. “I think that they felt like we had the talent. As a coach, as somebody who’s been with this program for close to 15 years, this is a huge accomplishment. And I don’t know that we’ve had another team that could have done this.”

Bellbrook will now face Columbus St. Francis DeSales in the D-II state semifinals at 7 p.m. on Wednesday. The game will be at Roger Glass Stadium at Chaminade-Julienne High School.

A perennial power, the Stallions have twice won state titles in 2018 and 2022, and now advanced to at least the state semifinals in five of the eight seasons the OHSAA has held a tournament. Just like Bellbrook, DeSales also defeated the top-seed from its region to advance to Wednesday’s contest. DeSales has a 12-3 record this season, averaging better than 12 goals per match and allowing fewer than six.

It looks to be the most difficult challenge Bellbrook will have faced this season. But confidence won’t be an issue.

“We put in the work all offseason and we do have a really good team this year,” Umina said. “I don’t think anyone is really that surprised we made it this far on this team.”

The Golden Eagles may be looking forward to some post season fun in the water, but they probably wouldn’t mind it if they could put off the festivities for a few extra days if it means a chance to win a state title is the alternative.

The party is happening win or lose.

“I’m a man of my word,” Molseed said. “I told you I’m going to get you one, so I’m going to get them one.”


No. 2 Bellbrook vs. No. 2 Columbus St. Francis DeSales

7 p.m., Wednesday

CJ’s Roger Glass Stadium

Tickets: Adults – $15, Students – $10, age 5 and under – free. Tickets are purchased online at

Contact Steven Wright at 937-502-4498 and follow on X (formerly Twitter) @Steven_Wright_.

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