North topples Gresham
GRESHAM — North Medford's boys seem to play their best soccer in the state playoffs.
In 1996, North was runner-up in the Southern Oregon Conference but advanced all the way to the state finals before losing to Crescent Valley 5-1.
The Black Tornado began its quest to go deep into the Class 4A state playoffs again with a 2-0 victory Saturday against Mount Hood Conference champion Gresham.
The Black Tornado will play the winner of the North Eugene-Lakeridge match on Tuesday.
I felt this was a game we needed to win to give us confidence, North Medford coach Rich Garcia said. We knew we could win this game. We went at it with workman-like efficiency.
The Tornado scored in the 14th minute when Colin Hunter headed in a throw-in by Dominic Crenshaw.
Then in the 31st minute, North capitalized on a mistake by the Gresham goalie for its second score. When Scott Jolly's shot from 17 yards was not controlled by the Gophers? keeper, Babak Asgharian pounced on the loose ball and put it into the net.
I couldn't celebrate because a 2-0 lead is very hard to defend, said Garcia. If they get a goal, all of a sudden it changes the momentum.
But North never allowed Gresham to get close.
One reason was the performance by junior goalie Dan Torrey, who came up with three outstanding saves.
He (Torrey) was owning the box back there, said Garcia. Any time they had a threat, he was punching the ball, catching the ball and distributing the ball.
Senior captain Josh Grace provided great leadership on the defense and Jolly and Crenshaw helped North control the midfield.
My assistant coach Matt Soper came up with the defensive game plan and it worked to perfection, said Garcia.
CORVALLIS 8, ASHLAND — — —
At Corvallis, the Spartans scored in the second minute of the game and never looked back, defeating the Grizzlies in the second round of the 4A state playoffs.
Senior David Smith scored a hat trick for the Spartans with two goals coming off headers.
Junior Scott Beaver scored the Grizzlies lone goal off a free kick from sophomore Matthew Sharp.
The Grizzlies finished the season at 8-5-1 overall.
KLAMATH UNION 3, LAKE OSWEGO 0 -At Klamath Falls, the Pelicans scored all three goals in the first half to get past Lake Oswego in the first round of the 4A state playoffs.
Junior Luis Garcia scored two goals including one on a free kick with 30 seconds left in the first half.
Senior Alex Casey scored a breakaway goal for the Pelicans.
The Pelicans, 12-3 overall, play at Sunset on Tuesday.
PHOENIX 8, UMPQUA VALLEY CHRISTIAN — -At Talent, David Peterson, John Hendricks and Tony Machado tallied two goals each as Phoenix easily advanced in the Class 3A/2A/1A state playoffs.
The seventh-ranked Pirates (12-2) play No. — Catlin Gabel, a 2-1 loser to LaSalle in last year's finals, in Tuesday's second round in Portland.
Machado, the Pirates senior goalie, scored two goals in the first 13 minutes on penalty kicks. Machado's pair of goals were sandwiched around Peterson's score in the 10th minute as Phoenix went into intermission with a 3-0 bulge.
Freshman Matt Seeley opened the Pirates second-half scoring in the ninth minute, followed by a Hendricks goal at the 17th minute.
After Umpqua Valley Christian scored on a breakaway, Phoenix answered with goals by Al Albright, Hendricks and Peterson.
Phoenix outshot the Monarchs, 27-4.
HIDDEN VALLEY 4, PLEASANT HILL — -At Grants Pass, Evan Cope scored two goals as fifth-ranked Hidden Valley (13-1) advanced with the state playoff victory at the Josephine County Fairgrounds.
Hidden Valley will face either Molalla or The Dalles in the round of 16 Tuesday.
Cope opened the scoring for the District 6 champions, followed by sophomore Dylan Borta's goal.
Hidden Valley leading scorer Matt Johnson was tackled in the box and awarded a penalty kick, which he converted, late in the half to give the Mustangs a 3-0 lead at the break.
Pleasant Hill cut the margin to 3-1 before Cope tacked on his second goal of the match.