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Defense-minded Falcons soar

La Salle Prep coeds go 5-0-0 in the first half of the TVC girls soccer season


The La Salle Falcons closed out the first half of the Tri-Valley Conference girls soccer season strong, handling Madras (5-0) and Estacada (3-1) in games last week.

The pair of wins put the Falcons at 5-0-0 in the TVC, giving them the inside track in the TVC league title chase. Gladstone (3-1-1) and Molalla (3-1-1) were tied for second place in the TVC heading into the second and final round.

The La Salle Prep Falcons took no hostages in an Oct. 1 home game with Madras, putting four goals in the net in the second half en route to a 5-0 shutout.

Five different players scored for the Falcons — seniors Rachael Gottsch and Courtney Crain, juniors Claire Primack and Kathryn Christoferson, and freshman Keegan Storlie. Regan Russell and Joslynn Bigelow made assists.

It was the fourth straight shutout in TVC play for the Falcons. Junior Grace Foren-Self was in goal for the Falcons, but didn’t have to make a single save, according to La Salle coach Ryan Cereghino.

Cereghino commented on the Madras match: “Overall, we played pretty well. Keeping our tempo and intensity high throughout the entire game was an issue that we addressed.

“Madras had many players in the box and we had to adjust our play as a result. It took us some time, but we were able to make the proper adjustments.

“The game was played primarily in our attacking third and we just had to be patient....

“Rachael Gottsch had a good game on the right wing and got us started with her goal in the second half. Her goal broke the lull of the game and helped us break through and put a few more goals on the board.”

“The defensive unit as a whole has been huge for us,” Cereghino said. “Joslynn Bigelow (sweeper), Natalie Stone (stopper), Talya Holenstein (left back) and Yoshi Higuera (right back) have been playing very well together.”

The Falcons got off to a slow start in last Thursday’s game at Estacada. The Falcons led 2-1 at halftime, but Estacada scored the game’s first goal.

“They took advantage of a couple defensive mistakes and put us in a hole early,” aCereghino said. “I credit our players afor keeping their heads up and fighting back to regain the lead.”

Claire Primack scored La Salle’s first and third goals, the first unassisted and the third off a cross from Kate Christoferson. Christoferson also scored, off a cross from Courtney Crain.

Foren-Self was in-goal for the Falcons.

Cereghino singled out three players for standout play.

“Claire Primack brought a lot of energy to the front line and kept a high pressure on their defense the whole game,” he said. “Kate Christoferson did a good job of distributing the ball, being in the right position to support, and putting shots on goal....

“Tori Goodman had a good game on the right wing. She consistently ran the wing and put in great crosses for us. She helped us create dangerous goal scoring opportunities and kept the team intensity high.”

La Salle faces a stiff test next Tuesday, when the Falcons entertain Molalla. The Falcons and Gladstone go head-to-head on Monday, Oct. 21, at Gladstone.

La Salle Prep guys

stumble at Madras

The La Salle Falcons let one get away from them in boys soccer on Oct. 1, losing 1-0 at Madras.

The loss, together with an Oct. 3 win over Estacada, left the Falcons (5-3-1, 3-1-1) just back of the White Buffaloes (5-1-2, 3-0-2), in second place in the Tri-Valley Conference standings, with the first half of the conference season complete.

Madras put the game’s only goal in the net with just two minutes to play.

“They were awarded a penalty kick when one of their players fell down in the box,” observed La Salle assistant coach Derek Ray. “They converted and got the win.”

The game was not without controversy. La Salle had a goal disallowed.

“The assistant referee called a goal but the head ref thought it went over the bar and through a hole in the top of the net into the goal,” Ray said. “They discussed and decided it wasn’t a goal.”

Ray said that the Falcons had more scoring opportunities than their hosts, but couldn’t convert.

Ray commented: “We need to work on playing a complete 80-minute game and not starting slow like we have done recently. We also need to work on converting our chances. We create quality chances, but have trouble finding the back of the net.

“We need to win out to prepare ourselves for the playoffs. We can compete with anyone in the state when we are playing to our potential.”

The Falcons got back on the win track last Thursday, upending Estacada 4-1.

The Falcons got off to a slow start, with their only goal of the first half an own-goal.

Brezdan Dunnigan struck early in the second half, upping the Falcon lead to 2-0.

Ari Tani and Tanner Latham added goals down the stretch, to round out the Falcons’ scoring.

Estacada scored its lone goal on a penalty kick as time was winding down.

“We got the three points we needed, but we really struggled finishing,” Ray said. “We are having a hard time replacing Dakota Eisel form last year. We are looking for people to step up and be our go-to goal scorers.... We need to do a better job finishing the opportunities we create, because we create some good chances....”

Next up for La Salle is an Oct. 15 game at Molalla (4-2-3, 2-0-3). The Indians and Falcons battled to a 2-2 tie in a Sept. 24 game at La Salle.




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