Pacer girls win play-in game, playoffs await
All four soccer teams will be in action this Saturday
After a regular season without many breaks, the Lakeridge girls soccer team showed its heart in it's 2-0 play-in victory over Centennial at home on Tuesday.
The Pacers, despite finishing eighth in the TRL, had a high enough power ranking to earn a play-in opportunity and made the most of it, scoring twice in the second half to take down the Eagles for the second time this year.
In the preseason, Lakeridge rallied to knock off Centennial in a wild 4-3 victory. This time it was Lakeridge's defense that ruled the contest, containing the Eagles for the majority of the game to advance into the field of 32.
It was a slow start for both teams. Lakeridge had a few chances in the early going that were negated by offsides penalties.
Sophie French knocked a header wide off a corner kick midway through the first half and Nicole Helm hit a deep shot over the crossbar. Olivia Onustock also made a nice cross late in the half but the ensuing shot missed wide.
The Pacers had another would-be goal wiped away because of offsides in the opening minutes of the second half but it would dominate the game from that point on.
Eight minutes into the half, the Pacers eared a free kick from 30 yards away from the net. French took the kick and put it on target, glancing through the Centennial goalie's hands to put her team on the board.
French was lethal on set pieces, nearly scoring on another opportunity a few minutes later from five yards further out.
Eight minutes after the Pacer took the lead, Centennial had trouble clearing a ball in its territory and French, a center defender, capitalized by burying a shot with 23:50 remaining.
Lakeridge would continue to put the pressure on, despite the two-goal advantage and came close to putting in a clinching score.
Lillie French had a pair of chances from close range, both of which were turned away impressively by Centennial's goalie, one from point blank range and one which deflected off the post.
Still, the Pacers were able to keep the ball away from the Eagles and preserve the victory to move on in the postseason.
The Pacers will take on No. 3 Southridge on Saturday, the runners up from the Metro League.
The Lake Oswego girls soccer team continued its strong finish to the regular season with a 2-0 victory over Canby. The win moved the Lakers into a tie for fifth place with Newberg.
After getting off to a slow start this year, the Lakers are now riding a six-game unbeaten streak that features three wins and three draws.
Due to the strength of their OSAA ranking, the Lakers were one of four teams to earn an automatic wild card berth into the playoff bracket where they are ranked No. 21 in the state. They will face No. 12 Sunset at 1 p.m. on Saturday.
Those teams played to a 3-3 draw in the regular season.
For the boys, both Lake Oswego and Lakeridge finished in the top four and earned a berth into the playoffs.
Lake Oswego tied with Canby 1-1 to close out the regular season. The Lakers still finished second in the TRL and are ranked No. 11 in the state.
Lake Oswego will battle Wilson Saturday in its playoff opener at home at 7 p.m. Wilson took fourth in the PIL this year.
The Lakeridge boys finished the regular season on a positive note, shutting out Sherwood 2-0 to clinch fourth place in the TRL.
Despite some hard-luck losses this year, Lakeridge still finished as the No. 12 team in the state due to a very tough strength of schedule.
Lakeirdge will host Sunset on Saturday at 6 p.m. The Apollos were fourth in the Metro League this season and tied with Lake Oswego 2-2 earlier this year.JW_DISQUS_ADD_A_COMMENT