Prep soccer: Pullman ousts East Valley

November 9, 2011 by  

YAKIMA, Wash. — Apologize for winning?

It’s virtually unheard of, but sometimes that seems like the only tack to take following an improbable victory.

Case in point, Pullman’s Doug Winchell.

“The best team didn’t win tonight,” Winchell said, moments after his team stunned previously unbeaten East Valley 2-1 in a shootout in Wednesday’s Class 2A first-round state soccer match at East Valley.

“Soccer’s ugly sometimes but you play the way you have to in order to survive,” Winchell continued. “They (East Valley) are an incredible team.”

“We dominated but the result was not what we wanted,” said East Valley coach Tim Ostrander, whose team outshot Pullman 24-5. “Soccer’s the kind of sport where that happens. There’s not a whole lot more to say in that situation.”

To say East Valley (17-1-1) dominated play prior to the shootout is a gross understatement, but the Greyhounds’ defense refused to break, creating one frustrating miss after another for the home team.

But that was Pullman’s plan all along, playing five defenders across the back row, with at least two more constantly dropping to help.

That’s why, despite their multitude of shots, the Red Devils didn’t have many quality scoring chances, with one shot going off the post and two headers just over the crossbar.

“We’d try and pass it around to set something up, but it always seemed like there were two blues for every white,” EV midfielder Yasi Mohsenian said, referring to the teams’ respective jersey colors. “We dominated but we just didn’t finish.”

East Valley did strike first, midway through the opening half, when Ashlee Betancourth fed a beautiful pass through to Shallise Rodriguez to the right of the goal and she fired the ball inside the left post.

That momentum was short-lived, however, as Pullman tied things less than two minutes later on its lone shot of the half. East Valley’s clearing pass was intercepted by Becky Birchett about 25 yards away from the goal, and she lofted a perfectly placed shot over goalie Katie Freisz’s fingertips and under the crossbar.

“It was frustrating for our momentum to go away so fast, but at the time, I wasn’t worried,” Ostrander said. “The way we were playing, I thought we’d punch a couple of more in. We had plenty of opportunities.”

But no success finding the net and after two five-minute overtime sessions, the teams went to a shootout, where East Valley had even less success finding the net.

The Red Devils, who went first, missed their first three attempts, with Pullman’s Dakota Wickard stopping shots by Kellie Ross, Mohsenian and Betancourth.

After Hannah Adams and Birchett scored on Pullman’s first two attempts, it came down to Bre Daugherty, who coolly fired the ball into the left side of the net for the winner, moving the Greyhounds (16-5) into a quarterfinal match Saturday against East Valley-Spokane.

“She’s a really good goalie, but we just didn’t do as well as we could have with our shots,” said Mohsenian, one of 11 seniors on the team.

“I told the girls, don’t let this result take away from our season and the amazing things that you accomplished,” said Ostrander, who was particularly disappointed for those seniors.

“They’re an amazing group of kids. They’ve been so much fun to be around. All the fun times is what I’ll take away from this season.

“It just didn’t end the way we wanted.”

First half: 1, East Valley, Shallise Rodriguez (Ashlee Betancourth), 22:00; 2, Pullman, Becky Birchett, 24:00.

Second half: No scoring.

Overtime: No scoring.

Shootout: Pullman 3 (Hannah Adams, Birchett, Bre Daugherty), East Valley 0.

Shots: Pullman 5, East Valley 24.

Saves: Dakota Wickard (P) 15, Katie Freisz (EV) 1.

Filed under All, East Valley, Soccer (Girls)

Speak Your Mind

Comments are moderated, so your comment will not show up immediately.

Keep comments civil (no anonymous personal attacks), clean (no swearing) and properly capitalized (NO ALL-CAPS COMMENTS).

Comments are generally moderated daily between 3 p.m. and midnight. If your comment does not appear within 24 hours of submission, resubmit it (it may have been caught by our spam filter). Comments regarding moderator decisions will not be approved.

Comments may be closed at any time.

If you have questions regarding our comment policies, e-mail us.