Myers strikes twice in Rangers win over North Marion
The Estacada girls climb to fourth in the Tri-Valley standings
With two swift kicks by senior forward Emily Myers, the Rangers made it two in a row.
Myers found the back of the net twice in the second half against North Marion to lift the Estacada girls soccer team to a 2-0 victory last week. It was the Rangers second consecutive victory, marking the first time they have won back-to-back matches since 2011. It also put the Rangers solidly into fourth place in the Tri-Valley League.
I think the team is starting to come together on the field, Estacada coach Heidi Hunt said. We had five freshmen on the field tonight, so we are still trying to settle the lineup, but we are starting to figure things out.
Estacadas offense sputtered in the first half when it had opportunities to gain control of the match. As early as five minutes in, the Rangers had a chance to bury a ball in the net, but North Marion was disruptive enough to redirect it. About five minutes after that initial look at the goal, the Rangers had another good look in the form of a corner kick. Kreek Copher lofted the ball into a cluster of teammates and foes and it bounced around from player to player in what looked like a life-size game of pinball. Multiple Rangers got their feet on the ball, but none could put it in.
Estacada pushed the ball into striking distance a few more times before halftime, but couldnt execute its offensive game plan and came up short.
After the scoreless first half, the Rangers were quite deliberate in their effort to get back to their game plan. It took some patience for it to yield results on the scoreboard, but in time, it did work.
We worked a lot in practice on spreading the field wide because the other team tends to bunch up in the middle, Hunt said. Im not sure which team showed up in the first half, but in the second half, we finally figured out how to do it.
The Rangers eventually found Myers in good position and scooted the ball to her. With little opposition between her and the North Marion goalkeeper, Myers punched it in to break the tie. Estacada again forced its way into the Huskies backfield a short time later and got the ball to Myers who scored again.
Facing a two-goal deficit, dwindling time on the clock and an Estacada defense that was persistently physical and pesky, the Huskies folded. As soon Myers second goal kissed the nylon net, the North Marion players lowered their shoulders and hung their heads as if they knew defeat was inevitable.
North Marion did keep Estacada out of the net for the rest of the match, but the Huskies lacked the offensive urgency and energy to get back in the match.
The Rangers two-match winning streak, capped with the win over North Marion, represented the best stretch of soccer Estacada has played in more than two years. The Rangers scored four goals in the two victories after scoring a total of three in their previous seven matchups.
These last two matches were against teams below us in the standings, so it was good to take care of the winnable games, Hunt said. I think that will give us some momentum.
Estacada plays its final home match on Thursday against Gladstone before wrapping up the regular season at La Salle on Tuesday.