After a tough win in the play-in round versus Cascade, Molalla’s boys soccer team lost 3-0 to Stayton in round one of the playoffs.

Stayton was the toughest competition the team faced all year, Coach Ryan Gates said.

Stayton finished first in the Oregon West Conference and was ranked third in the 4A division.

“It was a tough loss,” Gates said. “The game started off poorly. The first ten minutes cost us the game.”

Stayton got up to an early 2-0 lead, which the Indians couldn’t recover from.

“We never gave up,” Gates said. “We kept playing our game—we just couldn’t get the goal.”

It was a good season for Molalla. Even though they had lost much of their offense to graduation, they still won eight games this season, five of which were in league play and six of which the Indians finished with a clean sheet.

“Getting to the state playoffs was not something a lot of people expected,” Gates said. “I thought it was a great year.”

Their toughest league opponent of the season was La Salle. La Salle only lost one game in league play, to Madras, and they’re currently in the second round of playoffs.

Molalla played La Salle twice this year. The first time, the Indians held the Falcons at bay with a hard-earned 2-2 tie. In the second game, La Salle beat Molalla 1-0. It was the only league game the Indians lost on their home field all season.

For several of the boys, the game against Stayton was the last soccer game they played as Indians. Angel Jarquin, Jesse Stutzman, Erik Dickson, Darian Baughman, Aaron Glenn and Derek Free all graduate in 2014.

“I was very happy with the seniors I had,” Gates said. “They worked hard, were leaders and gave it their all … They’re going to be difficult to replace.”

The team has several solid players returning next year, and Gates is also eyeing a few of the junior varsity players for varsity positions.

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