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La Salle guys drop Ontario, meet their match in Henley


With most of their varsity lineup returning, the Falcons should be tough again next year

by: JON HOUSE - La Salle senior forward Nico Marquez-Stock (10) scores in last weeks 3-0 state playoff win over Ontario.The fourth-ranked La Salle Falcons couldn’t find the net, and they tasted defeat at the hands of the fifth-ranked Henley Hornets, 2-0, in a Saturday afternoon Class 4A boys soccer state quarterfinal playoff game at La Salle.

It was the eighth shutout of the season for the Hornets, and it was La Salle’s first loss since a 1-0 setback in an Oct. 1 game at Madras.

La Salle and Henley played to a scoreless tie in the first half. Henley scored the game’s first goal on a counter attack near the midpoint of the second half, and the Hornets added their insurance tally on a penalty kick, when the Falcons were pressing as the game was winding down.

“It was a pretty even match,” said La Salle assistant coach Derek Ray. “We had our chances. We just couldn’t put it away.”

The Tri-Valley Conference champion Falcons finished with an overall record of 11-4-1. The win advanced Henley (13-3-1) to a Nov. 12 semifinal game with seventh-ranked North Bend (15-2-0).

“We had a really great season,” said Ray. “We accomplished one of our goals, winning a league championship. We had hoped to go deep in the playoffs, but came up a little short....

“As we move up to 5A next season, I feel we are going to be very competitive. We only lose three seniors [Brezdan Dunnigan, Nico Marquez-Stock and Jordan Luyamba], so we’ll be experienced....”

The Falcons advanced to Saturday’s quarterfinal through a 3-0 shutout of Ontario, in a first-round state playoff game played at La Salle on Nov. 5.

“Our defense was outstanding and only allowed them two shots on-goal, only one of which was dangerous,” said Ray.

“We have been trying to pressure every team we have played this year relentlessly. We did a good job of that against Ontario.... We mainly just played solid one-v-one defense, delaying and not stabbing. They had trouble getting by us because of that.... Our pressure prevented them from getting really good shots off because we had a player right next to them anytime they were looking to shoot.”

Marquez-Stock put the first ball in the net in the twenty-third minute.

“Duran Herrera hit a long bouncing through ball behind their defense. Their keeper came out as Nico was running after the ball. Nico got there first and flicked the ball over their keeper into the net.”

Alex Baasten and Greg Manzano added insurance in the second half.

Baasten made it 2-0 sixteen minutes into the second period, taking a pass from Ian Hamel and drilling the ball into the net from 25 yards out.

Manzano got breakaway on a through ball from Kevin Luyamba with ten minutes to play.

Ray singled out Hamel for standout play on the defensive end.

“Ian had a great game in defense for us,” Ray said. “He won a lot of air balls and anchored our back line. Our pressure also prevented them from getting really good shots off, because we had a player right next to them anytime they were looking to shoot.”

Dylan Tran was in-goal for La Salle, as he recorded his ninth shutout of the season. It was only the third time that Ontario (8-7-0) had been shut out in 15 games this fall.

Looking ahead to next season, the Falcons should be competitive as they move up to Class 5A and the Northwest Oregon Conference.