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Lady Bowmen earn a trip to the finals

Soccer: Sherwood strikes quick to get a 2-0 semifinal win over Willamette

EUGENE - The Sherwood High School girls soccer team struck quick.

Twice.

And, because of that, the Lady Bowmen have a chance to claim a state championship.

Sherwood, scoring early goals in both halves, earned a spot in the Class 5A state title match by scoring a 2-0 win over Willamette in a Class 5A state playoff semifinal contest played Tuesday at Willamette High School.

'That was a very good win,' Sherwood coach Bill Brown said. 'We were pretty solid all over the field.'

Willamette, the Midwestern League champion, finished its season with a final overall record of 11-4-2.

Sherwood, the Northwest Oregon Conference champion, stayed perfect on the season, improving to 18-0. The Lady Bowmen also advance to play in the Class 5A state championship game.

They'll face NWOC rival Wilsonville Saturday in the state title contest, set to start at 1 p.m. at Hillsboro Stadium.

The Wildcats, the No. 2 team out of the NWOC, bring an 11-5-2 mark into Saturday's title contest.

Wilsonville downed state power Bend 3-2 in overtime in Tuesday's semifinal round to earn its spot in the title match. The Wildcats also have a playoff win over defending state champion Summit.

'There's a juggernaut four miles down the road,' Brown said. 'All you have to say is that they've beaten both Summit and Bend. They have a lot of good kids, they're aggressive and they're well-coached. (Wilsonville senior forward Nicole) Gearhart is a really good player.'

The two teams met earlier this season, with Sherwood scoring a 5-2 win in a NWOC match played Oct. 11 at Sherwood High School.

However, the Lady Bowmen may be a bit undermanned in Saturday's rematch, as senior midfielder Alex Teesdale, who was having an impressive run in the playoffs for the Lady Bowmen, suffered what was thought to be a torn anterior cruciate ligament 30 minutes into Tuesday's match and she'll likely miss Saturday's title tilt.

'That's a huge blow,' Brown said. 'But we have gets that will get in there and step up. We don't go down easy.'

The Lady Bowmen wasted little time stepping up in Tuesday's semifinal match. Sherwood took a 1-0 lead in the second minute of the contest when junior Meghan Schoen scored off an assist from Teesdale.

'In the next 15 or 20 minutes after that, we had several more opportunities, but we couldn't take advantage of them,' Brown said.

Sherwood, taking its 1-0 lead to halftime, struck again early in the second half, as junior Jessica Imbrie, making a diagonal run, scored off an assist from Schoen to up the margin to 2-0.

From there, the Lady Bowmen defense, getting a save by junior goalkeeper Kyeli Hendryx on a direct free-kick attempt by Willamette senior Courtney Wright, held off Willamette the rest of the way to wrap up the win.

Sherwood got strong play in the win from junior midfielders Michaela Pilkenton and Rojia Stocker, who both stepped up after Teesdale went down with the injury.

The Lady Bowmen outshot Willamette by a 14-4 margin in the contest.