The goals are coming a bit tougher these days for the Mt. Spokane girls soccer team, but the main objectives are still in sight.
In the last game of the season on their home field Thursday afternoon, the Wildcats claimed a closer-than-expected, 1-0 win over Shadle Park in the District 8 3A title game.
The reward: a trip to state if they can win the regional title match on Tuesday at Spokane Falls Community College. The Wildcats will face the runner-up from the Mid-Columbia Conference, either Kamiakin or Southridge.
Despite the loss, Shadle also advances to regional play at SFCC, but will have to win twice next week to advance. Conceivably, the Greater Spokane League rivals could meet again on Nov. 8, with a state berth on the line.
Mt. Spokane (13-3) won Thursday’s match with defense, limiting the Highlanders to three shots while getting 13.
“That’s the formula, our defense has been solid throughout the GSL season,” said coach Ryan Campanella, whose club has conceded just five goals in its last 10 matches.
On the other hand, the Wildcats have found the net just four times in their last three matches.
“But with the talent we have up top, the shots will come,” said Campanella, who saw his team dominate the run of play throughout the match as the Highlanders rarely put more than two players in the offensive end.
The Wildcats got off 13 shots against Shadle, and the Highlanders stopped them all. But one of them bounced off a Shadle elbow in the box, putting Ashley Sanders at the penalty spot in the 58th minute.
“I always get nervous taking penalty kicks, but I like to take them,” said Sanders, who put the ball in the left side of goal after Shadle goalie Hannah Johnson took away the right side.
“It was a good feeling,” Sanders said.
The outcome wasn’t all that bad for the Highlanders (5-10), who were outshot 20-3 in a 3-0 defeat in the teams’ regular-season match back on Sept. 26.
“The girls played with a lot of heart today,” said Highlanders coach Donny Hodgson, whose team beat North Central in a loser-out district match Tuesday.
“We weren’t supposed to win this match, but we battled to the end and we made sure that nothing came easy,” Hodgson said.
4A: Mead defeated University 3-1 and Central Valley blanked Lewis and Clark 2-0 to advance to Saturday’s district title match, where they will play for the top seed to next week’s regionals.
LC and U-Hi will play Saturday in a loser-out match. That winner advances to regional play.
Thursday, Mead got two goals from Alex Chambers, who scored her first directly after the opening kickoff. Chambers collected a through ball from Claire Neder behind the Titans defense, rounded on-rushing U-Hi keeper Ryann Rydeen and slotted the ball into the open net for the early lead. Chambers doubled the Panthers’ advantage 2 minutes after the half.
Aurora Mackie-Mueller put Mead up 3-0 when she turned in Olivia Sloan’s cross after the Panthers elected to play the ball short on a corner. Ashlyn Juul finished with eight saves for Mead.
GSL champion Central Valley broke a scoreless tie in the 55th minute, when Megan Dimmler found Katie Ames for the score. Kelsey Turnbow clinched the match in the 70th minute.
Lewis and Clark’s Emma Marshall saved seven shots and Chloe Sholtz saved five for Central Valley.
2A: East Valley (11-3) and Clarkston (11-5) won loser-out District 7 matches and will meet Saturday at EV in another loser-out match.
The Knights beat visiting Pullman (0-16) 3-0 thanks in part to Chelsea Love, who scored twice. Autumn Stewart scored East Valley’s other goal.
Clarkston staved off elimination with a 1-0 win over visiting Cheney (4-13). Ryen Nicholas scored in the seventh minute.
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