French's goal powers Northern York boys' soccer team into PIAA Class 3-A state semifinals


A Zach French goal in the 76th minute on Saturday afternoon lifted the Northern York boys’ soccer team into the state semifinals.

French’s header, off an assist from Shepard Soisson, broke a 3-3 tie against Selinsgrove in Dillsburg. The Polar Bears would go on to a 4-3 victory in the PIAA Class 3-A quarterfinal.

District 3 champion Northern improved to 18-0-1, while District 4 champion Selinsgrove finished at 17-3.

The Polar Bears will next face District 1 champion Upper Moreland at 6 p.m. Tuesday at North Side Elementary in Mechanicsburg. Upper Moreland (10-2) beat District 12 champion Archbishop Ryan in its state quarterfinal on Saturday, 1-0 in double overtime.

Northern looked as if it was going to cruise to victory over Selinsgrove on Saturday after jumping out to a 3-0 first-half lead. Selinsgrove, however, wouldn’t go away and rallied to tie the game at 3-3 in the second half before French delivered the game-winning goal.

Soisson, Spencer Silverling and Maddox Davies had Northern’s other goals. Ashton Davies added an assist.

Northern controlled the play for the most part, outshooting Selinsgrove, 20-12. Josh Hoffman had nine saves in goal for Northern to get the win.

The Polar Bears are now just two wins away from the program’s first-ever state championship.

Fairfield girls fall: In other state quarterfinal soccer action on Saturday, the news wasn’t quite as good for the Fairfield girls, who lost in a shootout to District 12 champion Conwell Egan, 4-3.

Neither team could score in regulation or two overtimes before going to the shootout at Gettysburg Middle School.

District 3 champion Fairfield, which shared the York-Adams Division III crown with Bermudian Springs, finished at 12-2-1. Fairfield was the last remaining York-Adams League team in the state soccer playoffs.

— Reach Steve Heiser at