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Penn girls soccer honored as nation's top team

Thursday's boys hoops matchup between Penn and Washington may have featured two undefeated teams, but another squad shared the spotlight.

Penn girls soccer was recognized at halftime for what was yet another tremendous season. MaxPreps and the National Guard honored the Kingsmen as part of the "Tour of Champions" held each year.

"To receive an award like this is a huge honor," said head coach Jeff Hart. "It's very humbling. We know how many great teams there are in our area and in Indiana. To be recognized beyond that, nationally, is quite an honor."

Penn completed a repeat this past fall, winning a second-consecutive state championship back in October. The team hasn't lost a game since the 2015 state title game, good for 47 straight wins.

Out of more than 34,000 teams across the country, Penn ended the 2017 season holding the number one ranking in America.

"We came into the season ranked number one nationally and so the target was on our back. We made sure to enjoy the journey. We had a lot of great opponents during the season that kept us motivated and kept us humble."

Through that, Hart said the character of the Kingsmen is what made the talent translate to wins. 

"Listen, we had top end talent. There's no question about it," said Hart. "We were usually the most talented team on the field until the end of the year. But we just had kids with high character, and kids that cared about something bigger than themselves. When you have those types of things, they don't guarantee championships, but it sure helps."

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