Indian boys soccer continues prep for league competition
As the smallest smallest school in Class 5A, it was reasonable to think the Scappoose boys soccer team might struggle at times after moving up from 4A this fall.
The challenge was made even tougher in the preseason, as the Tribe will face three strong 6A teams before entering Northwest Oregon Conference play in October.
After opening the season against former Cowapa League foe Seaside, Scappoose took on two of those big schools, Beaverton and Franklin, last week.
And while the final results -- a 3-0 loss to the Beavers on Sept. 6 and a 7-0 defeat by the Quakers on Tuesday -- were disappointing, coach Scott Stanton was pleased with his players' effort at home versus Beaverton.
"They played really well, but you don't get the result, so it's hard to stay motivated when that's what they want to base their performance off," Stanton said. "They moved the ball well, switched the ball from one side to the other, and didn't hang on to it too long. The general style of play that we've been working on was there, which was nice to see."
The 3-0 final was a bit misleading, as the Beavers didn't pull ahead until midway through the second half.
"We held them scoreless for an hour and had seven opportunities on goal in that opening hour," Stanton said. "We hit the crossbar one time. It could have been anybody's game. Then (the Beavers) scored, and it was just a lapse of concentration one moment right in front of the goal and they put it in."
With about 10 minutes to play, Stanton pulled a couple of his veteran players from the game and asked if they wanted to press forward for a tying goal or continue with the game plan, which would likely result in a respectable 1-0 loss to a good opponent.
"They wanted to go for the tie, so we switched some things around and let two (goals) in late trying to get one back and committing numbers forward," Stanton said.
In addition the step up in competition, the Tribe are also relatively young and inexperienced, comprised mostly of juniors.
"They're returning, but they're still pretty young especially to be playing against teams with mostly seniors and some juniors," Stanton said.
That inexperience showed Tuesday at Franklin, which scored twice in the first four minutes. It took a while for Scappoose to settle in and play more calmly, but it was difficult for the Tribe to play the ball out of the first third and link up with the forwards without ceding possession right back to the Quakers, who advanced to the second round of the 6A playoffs a year ago.
"It's tough when they're sustaining an attack for an extended period," Stanton said. "You kind of just want to get the ball the ball out of there. So they play a couple of passes and then try to find the forward, but that's pretty easy to read on that long of a pass, so Franklin was able to pick them off. Then they just came right back at us again."
Scappoose (0-3) kept the home side off the scoreboard for the remainder of the first half, but Franklin (2-2) scored in quick succession again, this time finding the back of the net twice in the 51st minute to make it 4-0. The Quakers added two more goals over the next 10 minutes. The final tally came with less than two minutes remaining.
The good news is that Tribe will see some familiar teams over the next two weeks, and Stanton hopes that will help rebuild the team's confidence before league play. Scappoose will play host to former Cowapa rival Astoria at 4:15 p.m. Tuesday before traveling to play Valley Catholic at 7:15 p.m. Wednesday.