Carmelís girls won their third championship in the Fourth Annual IHSAA Girls Soccer State Finals November 1, 1997 at Kuntz Stadium in Indianapolis with a 3-0 victory over Center Grove.

Top-ranked Carmel outdueled Center Grove after defeating Fort Wayne Luers 3-0 in the semifinals. Carmel (22-0-1) also was the state champion in 1994 and 1995, and finished as the state runner-up to Evansville Memorial in 1996. Overall, the Greyhounds collected their 59th IHSAA state championship overall in 11 different sports.

Third-ranked Center Grove (22-3), making its first appearance in the state finals, defeated Lake Central 2-0 in the semifinals.

In the championship game, Carmel took a 1-0 lead at the 32:41 mark of the first period on a penalty kick by junior Kara Bryan. Classmate Erin Riley gave the Greyhounds a two-goal lead just before intermission with a 25-yard shot off a free kick that found its way past the goalie. The final score came just 4:02 into the second period when sophomore Krista Rott headed a pass from senior Allie Heyworth into the net.


HANDEL NAMED MENTAL AWARD RECIPIENT -- Jenny Handel, a senior at Carmel High School, was named the 1997 recipient of the IHSAA Mental Attitude Award in Girls Soccer. Handel was the captain of the 1997 Greyhounds and a starter. Academically, she ranks No. 1 in a senior class of 703 students with a 4.0 grade point average. She scored a 1430 on the Scholastic Aptitude Test and is a member of the National Honor Society. Handel also is an outstanding musician in the Carmel High School Symphony Orchestra. She is a two-time state champion with the orchestra. Farm Bureau Insurance, corporate partner of the IHSAA, presented a $1,000 check to Carmel High School in Handelís name.



Carmel 3, Fort Wayne Luers 0.

Center Grove 2, Lake Central 0.

Championship: Carmel 3, Center Grove 0.