Girls soccer falls in State semifinals
Last updated 11/14/2023 at 12:17pm
The Lady Outlaws' stellar season came to end in a 4-1 loss to the No. 1 Valley Catholic Valiants (VC) on Tuesday, November 7. Sisters didn't lose a single game in league play, won the quarterfinal match and played hard against a top-notch, VC squad in the semifinals.
It took Sisters 10 to 15 minutes to settle into Tuesday's game. The Valiants had big, fast athletes who challenged the Lady Outlaws and made them work hard.
Valley Catholic scored at the 12-minute mark on a great shot from 30 yards out and took a 1-0 lead, but the Outlaws were able to hold them scoreless the remainder of the first half.
Coach Brian Holden said, "Our girls realized they could compete with the Valiants, but it would take everything they had to stay in the game."
The Valiants scored their second goal just two minutes into the second half, and then scored again three minutes later.
At that point, Holden made an adjustment on the field, and moved defender Shae Wyland upfront.
"She (Wyland) was nervous, but did an outstanding job," said Holden. "VC has a big center back that Shae matched up with as far as size and speed."
Wyland had her first goal-scoring opportunity within minutes of moving up. She got past the center back, unleashed her left foot, and sent a laser shot to the side of the goal. The keeper was able to tip the ball wide.
The Valiants scored their fourth goal in the 64th minute and went ahead 4-0.
"Every single one of their (VC) goals were beautiful," said Holden. "Their team really had a handful of girls that were quality finishers."
Sisters got their first goal two minutes later. They had a free kick, and Lilly Sundstrom took it and put it at the six-yard box. The Valiants' defense tried to clear it, but the Outlaws had enough players there to keep the ball alive. Marley Holden found the ball and dropped it to Wyland, who got a toe-poke on it for the goal.
Wyland continued to be a threat up front, and VC put two defenders on her. However, time ran out on the clock and the Valiants recorded the win.
Holden said, "Win or lose, it was so great to play the No. 1 team to see where we fit in the state of Oregon. This was probably the first game that Ava Reihle (goalie) has even been challenged. The Valiants had 18 shots on goal and she saved 14 of them. They weren't little dinky shots, but an array of different types that came in hard and from all over."
Holden noted several of his players.
"Izzy (Schiller) had her hands full at center back and did a great job," said Holden. "Her communication and determination kept us in the game. Lilly (Sundstrom) at wingback had to defend one of the fastest wingers we've seen this year and she shut her down the whole game. We have not found anybody faster than Lilly all year.
"Maggie (Lutz) has played for me all four years" added Holden. "She plays as a holding midfielder and this was the best I've ever seen her play. She was scrappy, physical, feisty, and didn't get knocked around. Her physical and mental game came together. Marley (Holden) had her hands full and was challenged with a skillful, strong center midfielder, and was able to bring a little calmness to the game."
Holden told The Nugget that this team was special.
"We've spent a lot of time together in indoor soccer, outdoor soccer, and our trip to Europe," said Holden. "I feel lucky and fortunate that I got to be a part of their lives and share this sport that we love together."