Local 2B Girls Soccer Teams Try to Earn Trip to Sumner
QUARTERFINALS: Onalaska, Toledo and Adna Look for Wins for Final Four Berth
By Matt Baide
Onalaska, Toledo and Adna are all in action on Saturday, hoping for a win and a spot in the Final Four in Sumner in the State 2B girls soccer tournament.
Here’s a look at each local team in the tournament.
Friday Harbor at Onalaska, 10 a.m., Centralia
The Loggers are hoping to continue their magical run in the playoffs by securing a berth in the final four with a win against Friday Harbor on Saturday at Tiger Stadium.
After finishing 13-4-1 overall and 6-3 in league games, the Loggers defeated Napavine, Adna and Toledo in the district tournament, each by a score of 1-0. Becca Griel scored the only goal in the district championship game against Toledo. Autumn Russ scored in a 1-0 upset of Adna in the semifinals and Savannah Gifford tallied the only goal in the quarterfinal match against Napavine.
“I think we’re playing our best soccer of the year just at the right time,” Onalaska coach Chris Van Clifford said. “I think that’s one of our strengths. We don’t rely on anyone to score goals. Anyone can score and we’re excited about that.”
Onalaska goalkeeper Alex Cleveland-Barrera turned in clean sheets in each contest.
“As far as I’m concerned, she’s our MVP,” Van Clifford said. “She’s had fantastic goalie work. We couldn’t have done it without her and we’re excited to have her back there.”
Friday Harbor is 8-7 overall this season and 6-3 in Northwest 1B/2B League games. The Wolverines defeated Evergreen Lutheran 3-0 to punch their ticket to state but lost to Mount Vernon Christian 4-0 in the bi-district title game.
“We don’t know a whole lot about them. We’ve just seen a little bit of tape, they look pretty good.” Van Clifford said. “We just kind of refine the same things we’ve been doing all year, midfield passing and getting down to the corners.”
Van Clifford said he believes as long as the team comes out and works hard all game, they’ll be playing in Sumner next weekend.
Toledo vs. Mount Vernon Christian, 11 a.m., Anacortes
The Indians are looking to earn a spot in the final four, heading north to take on Mount Vernon Christian at Anacortes High School.
Toledo eliminated Life Christian with a 2-1 win and then upset Kalama in the semifinals with a 2-1 win to earn a spot in the district championship game. The Indians fell in a battle with Onalaska in the district title game, 1-0.
“We showed up to the championship and were feeling good about beating Kalama. That was our second win in the district tournament ever,” Vazquez said. “The girls were a little nervous, feeling anxious and didn’t feel for sure how the game would go. Ony had a really good game plan against us. We have that experience and we know that we can compete.”
Marina Smith scored both goals in the win against Life Christian. Rose Dillon, Vanessa Rodriguez, Marina Smith, Haley Anderson and Maryssa Peters each scored in a shootout to lift Toledo to the win in a shootout against the Chinooks.
It won’t be an easy task for the Indians, taking on a Mount Vernon Christian team that lost just one game all year with a 15-1-1 record overall and an unblemished 9-0 record in the Northwest 1B/2B League. The Hurricanes defeated Muckleshoot Tribal School 8-0 before defeating Friday Harbor 4-0 in the bi-district championship.
“The only thing I know about them is that they have three of four girls that do some scoring. They have a high powered offense and we’ll have to step up and play some really good defense,” Vazquez said. “They were the district champs for a reason. We’ll leave tomorrow at midday, have a good night’s rest and try to have a little upset to put us in the semifinals.”
Vazquez said his seniors are ready to step up and Caitlin Olson has been rallying the team and pushing her teammates in order to be ready for Saturday’s contest. He believes that if Toledo can finish their opportunities, they will be in in Sumner next Friday.
“I think it’s going to be finishing. The number one thing that if we end up pulling off the win is because we took our chances and we were able to put them in the back of the net,” Vazquez said. “We had a hard time shooting against Ony. That’s what we focused on this whole week. If we only get that one chance to score, we’ve got to make sure we put it in the back of the net. You only have to win by one goal.”
Adna at Liberty Bell, 1 p.m., Winthrop
The Pirates are in an unfamiliar position as the No. 3 team out of District IV and will travel all the way to North Central Washington to take on Liberty Bell in the state quarterfinals.
Adna defeated Liberty Bell 3-0 last season in the third place game.
“Every year is a new year with new kids. Patrick (Richardson) has done some scouting. I’ve taken the thought of go with what we got when we get there,” Adna coach Juli Aselton said. “We’ve scouted other teams before and it doesn’t work out for us. Sometimes, they play completely different than what we think. We’ll just go in there and play our game, work hard and do some adjusting during the game if we need to.”
The Pirates lost to Onalaska 1-0 in the district semifinals, forcing them into a win or go home scenario against Kalama. Adna won 2-1 to lock up a spot in the state tournament on Kalama’s home field.
“We’ve usually been up there at the top with teams trying to beat us. It was different to where we need to beat this team,” Aselton said. “It gives you a little more incentive coming out there knowing that some teams are higher than us now. We need to come through and beat them.”
The Pirates have been in the state final four in each of the last six seasons. They hope that experience will help them reach the final four once again.
“I think they’re going to lean on (experience) quite a bit. We always try to tell our team, even though we have four solid captains, everyone can step up and help each other out,” Aselton said. “Anybody that’s there in that situation needs to speak up and be a leader. Most of these girls have been there already and we’re pretty lucky that everybody’s been there.”
The Mountain Lions were 12-4 overall and 10-2 in Central Washington 2B League games.
Aselton believes the biggest factor will be how the Pirates wake up on Saturday.
“Some days, we’re quick right away. Some days, it takes a little bit to get into gear. It’s a mental game for the girls,” Aselson said. “Will they be ready to leave it out on the field and work together? Everybody can play tough but it takes everyone on the team. The biggest thing to overcome is that mental game of using each other and working together.”