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Crusaders oust Apollos, head to state title game

Jesuit beats Sunset 4-2 in Tuesdays semi; Lincoln next


CEDAR MILL — There’s no fight to match a fight between brothers.

And in a sense, that’s exactly what was going on when the Apollo boys soccer team welcomed Metro League foe Jesuit to Sunset High School on Tuesday night with a berth to the Class 6A state championship game up for grabs.

Ultimately, it was Metro champ Jesuit that held the upper hand, breaking a 1-1 tie with three goals in a span of less than 10 minutes at the end of the first half and start of the second to pull away and win 4-2. In the process, the third-ranked Crusaders earned a berth in Saturday’s state title contest, facing No. 5 Lincoln — the second-place team from Special District 1 — at 6 p.m. at Hillsboro Stadium.

by: MILES VANCE - GOOAAALL - Jesuit's Tyler Street (center) is surrounded by teammates (from left) Chase Boone, Matt Nachreiner, Shane Richards, Spencer Scott and Pierce Baldocchi after his goal against Sunset on Tuesday.

“It’s just another opponent,” said Jesuit senior defender Matt Nachreiner, who assisted on two of his team’s scores against Sunset. “We just have to come out to the best of our ability.”

“We have the players to do it and we work as a team,” said Jesuit junior midfielder Tyler Street, who scored one goal and assisted on another against the Apollos. “We have good chemistry and we’re all good friends. We just have to come out hard no matter who it is.”

Tuesday’s win lifted Jesuit’s season record to 16-1-1, while No. 15 Sunset, the Metro runner-up, ended its year at 10-4-4 and was left to ponder a great playoff run that included two wins in penalty kicks and another in overtime.

“We definitely struggled coming into playoffs, but when we had to win, we won, and we put a lot of effort towards getting here,” said Sunset senior defender Mason Crow. “It was a great year.”

“It’s too bad we didn’t win this game, but we had a great year, won the last three playoff games and got to this point and that’s all that matters,” added senior midfielder Henry King, who scored his team’s second goal on Tuesday.

Tuesday’s match looked like a great precursor for the upcoming state title game too, as both the Apollos and Crusaders played with incredible intensity that led to several time stoppages and each team losing one player to injuries — for Sunset it was senior midfielder Oliver King who left just over two minutes into the contest and did not return, while Jesuit saw senior midfielder Joel Schierman forced out of action just a minute later, also not to return.

After a number of strong attacks on each end, it was Jesuit that broke through first on Tuesday, with Street sending a corner kick into the Sunset penalty box from the right side. The ball got deflected away from the Apollo goal but came right to Jesuit sophomore forward Henry Rocker who headed it home with 15:34 remaining in the first half.

Sunset got the equalizer 11 minutes later, when Crow made a throw-in into the Jesuit penalty area from the right sideline and junior forward Erick Moreno stepped up to volley the bouncing ball past Jesuit keeper John Melito to the right post to make it 1-1.

But with just four minutes left in the half, Sunset couldn’t preserve that tie. Street started Jesuit’s next scoring play, this time sending a long free kick into the Sunset box that junior midfielder Christo Michaelson ran onto and headed past Apollo keeper Bernardo Palma into the left corner of the goal in the final minute of the half for a 2-1 lead.

Jesuit kept the heat on at the start of the second half, too, pushing across two more goals in the first 8:53 of the half to take total control of the game at 4-1. The first of those two scores came just 1:29 into the half when Nachreiner made a long throw-in from the left side of the field and Rocker flicked a header into the goal on the left side.

The second score came courtesy of Street with 31:07 left in the match. Nachreiner started things again with a throw-in that got bounced out to the top of the penalty box where Street hammered a rocket into the right corner of the goal to make it 4-1.

Sunset kept battling, though, and cut the Jesuit led to 4-2 when Henry King ran onto a long pass into the Crusader penalty box and hit a shot into the right corner of the goal with 13:45 left on the clock. But the Apollos wouldn’t score again and left to consider what might have been while Jesuit began preparations for the state title contest.

“I thought our team (would get to the championship) from the beginning,” Street said. “We just try to come out hard every single game, try to beat our opponents, do whatever we can to do it.”

“We took the fight to them,” Henry King added. “We just couldn’t put the ball in the back of the net enough.”

Jesuit 2, Central Catholic 0

BEAVERTON — For the second time in three days, Jesuit High School proved itself a burial ground for Central Catholic soccer.

On Nov. 6, the Jesuit girls team sent the Rams packing with a 3-0 second-round playoff win. On Saturday, it was the Crusader boys’ turn and they followed suit, shutting down CC from start to finish in their 2-0 quarterfinal victory.

Jesuit scored both its goals in Saturday’s first half, rode out a rejuvenated Rams’ attack in the second half and walked off with a 2-0 victory. The loss ended sixth-ranked Central’s season at 12-1-3 after winning the Mt. Hood Conference title.

The Crusaders put the pressure on the Rams right from the opening kick on Saturday, controlling possession and limiting Central’s offensive opportunities. Jesuit then broke through for the day’s first score when Street volleyed home a throw-in from Nachreiner to make it 1-0 with 27:10 remaining in the first half.

Jesuit was back in goal with 10:32 to go in the first half when junior Charlie Chimento took a free kick from 40 yards out and Michaelson slid in to get his foot on the ball and knock it past Rams’ keeper Tristan Cooper to the right post.

Melito and Nachreiner teamed up in the final minute of the first half to stop Central’s best scoring chance, with Nachreiner heading away a Cristian Arntson free kick with Melito out of goal, and Melito recovering to smother a deflection.

In the second half, Rocker headed a Street free kick off the crossbar with 14:30 left to play, but that was as close as either team would come to scoring in the final 40 minutes.

To see complete photo galleries from these games, please go to milesvance.exposuremanager.com.

Sunset 3, South Eugene 2 (OT)

EUGENE — By Sunset standards, Saturday’s 3-2 overtime win over South Eugene was a virtual snooze-fest.

The Apollos, coming off two straight playoff wins in penalty kicks, needed just overtime to get past the talented Axemen 3-2 on Saturday at South Eugene High School, with Joe Decesaro scoring the game-winner in the first half of the extra period.

“Being our third overtime game in a row, we felt comfortable knowing what to expect,” said Sunset coach Tor Southard. “And we comfortably played out the second half of overtime to a victory.”

The Apollos got things started with the day’s first goal 15 minutes into the match when midfielder Louis Tanguy sent a corner kick into the Axemen penalty box and freshman teammate Lewis Coates headed it home past South Eugene goalkeeper Mak Lindquist for a 1-0 lead.

Sunset made it 2-0 15 minutes later when Chris Laidlaw corralled the ball inside the Axemen box and score in the bottom corner of the goal.

But it wasn’t going to be that easy.

South Eugene cut its deficit to 2-1 late in the first half when Max Hawes scored, then deadlocked the game at 2-2 midway through the second half on a goal by Ricardo Gomez scored.

“We knew South Eugene was all about competing and not letting up not matter what the score,” Southard said. “True to their nature, they pulled back a goal before halftime.”

Undaunted, the Apollos got the game-winner with a minute left in the first half of overtime, with Decesaro running onto a bouncing free kick and heading the ball into the goal.

The 10th-ranked Axemen, champions of Special District 1, ended their year at 11-6-0.



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