Molalla scores four straight goals to beat Estacada

With an early goal against the defending state champion, the Estacada Rangers had reason to be optimistic. But that optimism didn’t quite translate onto the field as the Rangers fell to Molalla 4-1.

When the Rangers took an early 1-0 lead on the Indians, they became the first team since Sept. 13 to score on the Indians. But like each of the teams they had shutout, the Indians eventually defeated the Rangers fairly easily.

But things got physical late in the first half, as three yellow cards were handed out — two for Estacada and one for Molalla. The Rangers went into halftime trailing by one goal at 2-1.

The Rangers came out flat in the second half as Molalla dominated play from the outset. Just five minutes in, it was the Indians putting a shot off the crossbar before adding their third goal of the game just six minutes later.

The Indians looked to extend their lead just minutes later after a miscue from an Estacada defender led to a Molalla breakaway, but a nice save from goalkeeper Christian Ucan kept the score at 3-1.

Minutes later, Molalla was threatening again, this time on a corner kick, but as the ball rolled towards the goal line, Estacada’s Tristan Thom cleared it off the line to prevent the goal.

Lucky to only be trailing by two based on how the game was going, the Indians eventually got their fourth goal of the game with 10 minutes remaining.

Despite the game’s outcome all but being decided, the physicality of play continued as Estacada’s Anthony Cauich earned his second yellow card of the match, giving him a red card, with just 22 seconds left on the clock.

As Cauich was sent off, time mercifully expired on the game as the Rangers dropped their third-straight league match of the season.

“Without a question that’s the best team in the league,” head coach Johnnie Workman said. “They have three first-team all-state player returning from last year including the state player of the year.

“We need to work on communication because we’re still young and we’re a little lost out there. We need to just get the ball forward and then we’re off to the races.”

The Rangers will face La Salle at home on Thursday at 6:30 p.m.

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