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Jesuit starts second season with back-to-back wins

The Metro champs are off and running in the 6A state soccer playoffs
by: Vern Uyetake MAKING HER MOVE — Jesuit’s Maddie Gram (right) works past Lake Oswego’s Grayson Williams-Krebs in the Crusaders’ 2-0 Saturday win.

The Jesuit girls soccer team is right where it wants to be.

On top of the Metro League, on top of the state rankings, and going strong with the Class 6A state quarterfinals due on Saturday.

The Metro champion Crusaders (14-1-1) opened the state playoffs with a 2-0 home win over Lake Oswego on Saturday, then duplicated that feat in a 2-0 win over Lincoln at Jesuit on Tuesday.

Now, Jesuit will host South Salem (14-2-0 after winning the Central Valley Conference) in the state quarterfinals at 1 p.m. Saturday.

'It should be a good game,' said Jesuit coach Steve Fennah, who led his team to the 2010 Class 6A state championship. 'We played them in the first game of the year and we thought they were a good team then. They have good strikers.'

Jesuit 2, Lincoln 0

BEAVERTON - The Crusaders were beginning to wonder about their luck on Tuesday, seeing two early scoring chances go by the boards as shots ricocheted off the crossbar and post of the Lincoln goal.

But they needn't have worried. Senior Claire Wilson got her team on the scoreboard midway through the first half when she struck a long free kick toward the Cardinals' goal. The ball took an unusual bounce on the wet turf and looped over the Lincoln keeper's outstretched hands and into the corner of the goal to make it 1-0.

'We decided we'd take that bit of luck since we'd just hit the bar and hit the post,' Fennah said.

Jesuit then got its insurance goal with about 20 minutes to play in the second half. There, following a Jesuit corner kick, junior Shanna Lechelt collected a deflection and hooked the ball back toward the goal where senior Michaela Phillips headed it home for the final 2-0 margin.

Lincoln, the sixth-place finisher in Special District 1, ended its year at 6-6-4.

Jesuit 2, Lake Oswego 0

BEAVERTON - Jesuit was solid as a rock in its playoff opener against Lake Oswego, getting one goal in each half and sending the Lakers packing on the wrong end of a 2-0 decision.

Freshman Maddie Kincaid, the Crusaders' leading scorer this year, collected both scored against LO, knocking home the first on an assist from Molly Petrusich, then adding the second in the final 40 minutes thanks to a pass from teammate Dani Brown.

Fennah said his team created several other strong chances in the win, but credited the play of the Laker keeper in keeping the score at just 2-0.