Liberty girls cap the regular season with a 6-1 drubbing of Parkrose in NWOC play

Bianca Andrade Torres picked the perfect night for a hat HILLSBORO TRIBUNE PHOTO: AMANDA MILES - Liberty's Liz Banning (right) and Parkrose's Amanda Gilliam converge on a loose ball during Tuesday's NWOC girls soccer match.

The Liberty senior forward poured in three goals on Senior Night — including the second-half game-winner — sparking the Falcons to a 6-1 win against Parkrose on Tuesday in both sides’ Northwest Oregon Conference finale at Liberty High School. With the victory, the Falcons (6-8, 4-3) finished fourth in the league, behind Wilsonville, Sherwood and Putnam, and just ahead of the fifth-place Broncos (6-6-1, 3-3-1).

“I was really hoping for the win, and that’s what I was going for, so I’m glad that we got it,” Andrade Torres said afterward, as the team dispersed from its postgame huddle.

Andrade Torres’ second goal of the match broke a 1-1 tie and jump-started a second-half scoring barrage by Liberty, which poured in five goals after the intermission to turn a close match into a blowout. The six goals matched the home side’s highest single-game scoring output of the season.

“It was just a really good reaction to how the first half ended,” Falcons coach Jim Maine said about the second 40 minutes. “Going in 1-1 with something like that on the back of your mind and coming out with the reaction that we had I thought was outstanding. I mean, five goals in a half — very rare.”

After literally giving up a goal right before the halftime whistle, Liberty did not have to wait too long into the second half to retake the lead. In the game’s 49th minute, Alison Flores earned a corner kick when Parkrose goalkeeper Monica Pettigrove was forced to push her free kick from about 30 yards out of play. About 35 seconds later, Flores also took the corner, from the left side of the field, and Liberty cashed in.

After Flores sent the kick into the Broncos’ penalty area, Pettigrove tried to make a play on the ball but didn’t come up with it. Andrade Torres did, meeting the ball at the far post and tapping it in from a couple yards out to give the Falcons a lead they would not relinquish.

Instead, over the rest of the match, the Falcons just built upon it.

Five minutes after Andrade Torres’ second score, Mia Castaneda provided the first insurance goal when she curled a shot from about 15 yards around Pettigrove and into the right side of the goal. Liz Banning provided another beautiful strike in the 65th minute. After taking a pass from Rachel Khaw, she worked down the left sideline before turning inside and then tucking a shot from about 22 yards out inside the far post.

Andrade Torres completed her hat trick in the 72nd minute. On another ball from Khaw, she juked a couple of defenders before launching a shot from outside of the penalty area into the goal.

“She is quite a player, and she just proved tonight how dangerous she can be,” Maine said. “A player with skill, a player with pace and a nose for a goal — that’s a dangerous thing, and she proved it tonight.”

Flores rounded out the scoring about three minutes later, when Khaw centered the ball from the left side of the field and Flores chipped it in from about 20 yards.

In the first half, Andrade Torres opened up the match’s scoring in the 15th minute, when she beat a Broncos defender on the left side and then fired past Pettigrove from a few yards out. Liberty controlled much of the rest of the half — Khaw bounced a shot off of the crossbar and Banning forced Pettigrove to punch a chip shot over the bar — but that did not stop an opportunistic Parkrose side from keeping itself in the match.

Freshman Jewel Boland knotted up the match with less than 12 seconds remaining in the half when she took a diagonal ball on the right side, beat the Falcons defense and sent a shot toward the Liberty goal. Goalkeeper Katie Blake was in position to make the save, but the ball slipped between her legs and slowly rolled over the end line before she could get a handle on it.

In the second half, though, it was all Liberty.

“All the seniors put in something to say during halftime and just picked the whole team up,” Andrade Torres said. “That’s all it took for us to come back the second half.”

As of Wednesday afternoon, Liberty sat 17th in the OSAA rankings. Some Class 5A teams were wrapping up league play Wednesday night, so the Falcons did not know their play-in game or location at press deadline.

Remaining at 17th or lower in the rankings would mean that they will be traveling for a play-in game either today or tomorrow. If they bumped up a spot or more on the list, they will host a match for the chance to join the 16-team state playoff field. The first round starts on Tuesday. Check for game details.

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