2A girls soccer
For teams that combined to score more than 170 goals this season, the Riverside Rams and Othello Huskies didn’t look much like offensive juggernauts in their State 2A girls soccer semifinal game at Federal Way Memorial Field on Friday.
Neither team could score through 90 minutes, sending the game into a shootout. Once they stepped up to the penalty spot, however, they were nearly unstoppable.
After the teams combined for 16 consecutive penalty-shot goals, Othello finally blinked. Then a reluctant Kelly Ostby, a Riverside freshman, nervously stepped up and peppered a shot into the right side of the net. It gave the Rams a 1-0 win (9-8 in shootout) and sent Riverside (19-0) into the state championship today at 4 p.m. against Sultan.
The Turks (16-1-1) beat Elma 2-0.
“I was really hoping it wouldn’t get to me,” Ostby said. “My hands were tingling.”
Their success from the penalty kick spot amazed both the Rams players and Riverside coach Kevin Moon.
“We practice penalty kicks, but we’ve never made nine in a row,” said Moon. “And all were unsaveable.”
Othello shot first in the penalty kick session and was equally impressive with unsaveable shots through eight rounds. Then Ester Mohs rattled the crossbar on the ninth try.
The Riverside shooters, Tracy Koesel, Brooke Dornquast, Jamie Rizzuto, Jami Baker, Bernice Stime, Lauri Faraschuk, Larissa Mueller, Cassidee Hall and Ostby, were unflappable even with the game on the line on the final five kicks.
“I was very scared,” said Faraschuk, who two years ago missed the fifth and deciding penalty kick in the Rams’ state quarterfinal loss. “When I was up there, I didn’t even want to think about what happened before. I just thought about today and what I needed to do.”
In the first half, Riverside created a couple of scoring opportunities, but could never pull the trigger on a shot.
Adjusting to their first game on artificial turf caused Riverside problems. Stringing more than two passes together was a rare feat for the Rams.
One of Riverside’s best shots in the second half came off the head of an Othello defender. Rizzuto served up a free kick from 20 yards out on the left. Trying to clear the ball, the defender headed the ball just wide of the Huskies’ left post.
It seemed to ignite the Rams, who applied heavy pressure inside the Othello penalty box the final 10 minutes of the game.
With 3 minutes left, Mueller made a run down the left side. She shot off a hard angle near the end line. Othello keeper Jennifer Mendez, thinking the ball would go out, let it roll. It caromed off the post and across the middle of the goal. Dornquast followed with a shot, but it was deflected away by a Husky defender.
In the final minute, Othello’s Amy Rogers picked up a loose ball in front of the Riverside goal and blasted a shot from 12 yards. Rams keeper Carlee Schluter knocked the ball over the crossbar.