The third-ranked Pioneers handle West Linn in back-to-back games

OREGON CITY - Oregon City High School's girls lacrosse team continued on track last week, sweeping seventh-ranked West Linn in a pair of league games, 16-4 and 12-6.

'I think our prospects of making the state final are very strong again this year,' said Oregon City coach Dara Kramer. 'We're playing really well as a team right now - after getting a few girls back who were injured.'

The Pioneers, through play last week, were ranked third in the state with a 9-2 record. Their only losses were in one-point barnburners with top-ranked St. Mary's (11-10) and with second-ranked Lake Oswego (9-8).

The Pioneers have a rematch with Lake Oswego at 6:30 p.m. this Friday at Lake Oswego.

'When we lost to Lake Oswego by a point our goalie and center were injured,' said Kramer. 'Now that we have these two players back, it should be a whole difference game when we play Lake Oswego on Friday.'

Senior attacker Katie Sanburn and junior midfielder Natalie Harrington were at the top of their games in last week's wins over West Linn. Sanburn had eight goals and an assist in the two games; Harrington had eight goals and four assists.

Junior attacker Maddie Garcia added five goals and an assist; junior midfielder Kaitlyn Harper had three goals and an assist.

Senior goal keeper Jessica Kuehlwein had a 67 percent save average.

Harrington and Sanburn are the Pioneers' leading scorers on the season. They had 81 goals between them in the Pioneers' first 10 games.

Except for the losses to St. Mary's and Lake Oswego, the Pioneers have dominated all opponents this season. Besides sweeping West Linn, they have wins over Aloha (17-1), Liberty (15-7), Glencoe (18-2), Beaverton (19-1), Hood River (20-5), Lakeridge (14-8) and North Clackamas (18-4).

The Pioneers host Sherwood at 8 p.m. on Thursday, May 8, in their final game of the regular season. Then it's on to the 12-team state playoffs, with the quarterfinals on May 16, the semifinals on May 20 and the finals on May 22. The Pioneers, who lost to St. Mary's in overtime in last year's state final, will likely get a bye in the quarterfinal round.

'Lake Oswego, St. Mary's and Oregon City are at the top of the state's competition,' said Kramer. 'It's going to be interesting how the playoff seeding goes and who faces who before the championship game.'

Three Oregon City players got good news last Saturday, when they traveled to Lakeside High School in Seattle and earned a spot on the Northwest Regional Girls Lacrosse Team. The three Oregon City junior midfielders - Garcia, Harrington and Brianne Paisley - earned spots on the team through tryouts. Athletes from Oregon, Washington and Idaho took part in the tryouts.

The all-star team will travel to Baltimore, Maryland, May 23-26 for the U.S. Lacrosse National Tournament.

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