Soccer girls start state playoffs
Buffs visit Portland area Saturday
Teressa Alexander's tresses could be said to have more style than her shot for Madras High some 15 minutes into the first half of a Saturday Special District 7 match against Mac High of Milton-Freewater.
Alexander, her teammates and coach Mike Osborne could care less.
Thanks to Alexander's getting off a shot during a scramble which also included a touch by Madras teammate Christina Barnes, the ball was hit solidly and straightly enough to beat the Mac High goal keeper. Thus, combined with a win Saturday at The Dalles by Ontario, the White Buffalos earned their district's third seed in the state playoffs this Saturday.
Madras will be visiting the winner of a playoff game to determine the final spot from Special District 2, which includes a number of teams from the Tri-Valley League in which it normally competes. On Saturday Madras will be off to either LaSalle or Sherwood High.
Osborne said the White Buffalos had enjoyed enough of an advantage in shots taken with the wind at their back in the first half that he was hoping to be another goal ahead.
Rather than go into any kind of defensive shell, however, when into the wind, Madras kept attacking.
Osborne explained that at halftime he told the girls to keep moving the ball toward their goal but to use more precise passes.
"We needed to get off shots more quickly when they presented themselves in the first half. The girls were doing a better job in the second half, even though we didn't score," he added.
With senior exchange student Maria B³gelund, joined by fellow senior Rosalba Barboza at times plus Pasha Smith, Barnes and Tosha Wilson at various times, Madras kept pressure on the Mac High goal.
Senior Holley Hinson was among a backline of defenders which minimized the number of attacks goal keeper Elise Hawes faced for Madras. Rylee Sweeney and Alyssa Earnest were among the other White Buffalos making clearing kicks on Saturday.
The depth of the district Sherwood and LaSalle are from will provide one of the toughest challenges of the season for Madras again on Saturday.