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SOU men top Northwest, streak into playoffs

KIRKLAND, Wash. — The Southern Oregon men’s soccer team hit the 10-win mark in Cascade Conference play for the third straight year and will have momentum on its side entering the playoffs after capping the regular season with a 3-1 win at Northwest (Wash.) on Saturday afternoon.

After falling behind in the 14th minute, the Raiders (12-5-1 overall, 10-2-1 Cascade Conference) recovered with goals from Brendan Allen, Yan Pessoa de Oliveira and Michael Miller to keep their unbeaten streak active at eight games.

The Raiders’ postseason positioning was already locked in going into the game. They’ll have the No. 3 seed in the eight-team CCC Championships starting Nov. 12 in Springfield.

Rocky Mountain (Mont.) will play at Corban for the regular-season championship today, with the Corban clinging to a one-point lead in the standings. The winner will take the CCC’s first automatic bid to the NAIA Opening Round, with the second up for grabs in the tournament.

Allen’s third goal in as many games and fourth of the season represented the equalizer in the 38th minute. Alan Gaytan and Sam Walker were credited with assists on the play.

Luis Aguliar assisted Pessoa de Oliveira to give the Raiders a lead two minutes into the second half, and Miller picked up his goal unassisted in the 52nd.

Jordan Travis tallied Northwest’s lone score. The Eagles only got one other shot on goal, which was stopped by Wyatt Zabinski.

The Raiders ended last season on a similarly high note, taking a 16-game unbeaten streak into the playoffs. They’ve gone 7-0-1 during the current streak, winning their last five games.

The CCC Tournament postseason field will be announced following the completion of today’s games.

Volleyball

SOUTHERN OREGON 3, COLLEGE OF IDAHO 0: At Caldwell, Idaho, a night after its upset of No. 3 Eastern Oregon, the ninth-ranked Southern Oregon volleyball team suffered from no emotional hangover as it stormed past No. 21 College of Idaho at the J.A. Albertson Center.

Back in a tie for first place in the Cascade Conference standings, the Raiders completed a perfect road trip with a breezy 25-16, 25-14, 25-16 win against the Yotes behind 13 kills from Maddie Pernich and 12 from Taylor Ristvedt.

The duo led SOU (25-3 overall, 16-2 CCC) to a potent .393 attacking average, while Makayla Hoyt (5 blocks) and Elliott Cook (4 blocks) led a strong defensive effort that kept the Yotes at .079 with nine total blocks.

The Raiders have won 10 straight and swept the trip to EOU and C of I for the second consecutive season. Before they did it last year, no CCC team had pulled it off since 2005.

They received another piece of good news on Saturday when the CCC office issued a clarification of its tiebreaker language. If SOU and EOU both remain tied through the end of the regular season — the Raiders finish at home next weekend against Northwest (Wash.) and Evergreen (Wash.) — the No. 1 seed and CCC Tournament hosting rights will go to the team with the higher percentage of sets won against the rest of the conference.

Under the tiebreaker rules previously believed to be in effect — highest set win-percentage against the third-place team in the standings — the advantage would have gone to EOU.

Sara Fanger helped keep the Raiders in the driver’s seat with a match-high 13 digs, and Emma Ryan added two service aces to her nine-dig total. Cook and Nila Lukens contributed five kills apiece, and Hannah Bogatin recorded 17 assists and two aces.

The Yotes dropped to 15-10 overall and 10-8 in the CCC. It’s the first time they’ve dropped eight conference matches since 1995.

ROGUE CC 3, LIN BENTON CC 1: Violett Togagae had had 16 kills and 21 digs, Paia Togagae 16 kills and 13 digs and Olivia Wallace 45 assists and 13 digs as Rogue Community College pulled away to beat Linn Benton, 35-33, 23-25, 25-18, 25-15.

The win improved the Ospreys to 24-3 overall, 12-2 in the Northwest Athletic Conference. Linn Benton fell to 24-10 and 10-3.

Women’s Soccer

SOUTHERN OREGON 1, NORTHWEST 0: At Kirkland, Wash., the Southern Oregon women’s soccer team put an exclamation mark on the end of the regular season with its fifth consecutive shutout and third defeat of an NAIA Top 25 team.

An own goal was the difference. In the 54th minute, Maddie Casey fired a shot off the post that went to an Eagles defender, who inadvertently flicked the ball into the net to break the tie.

Raider keeper Kailey Lemon got the shutout, her fourth of the season, by making four saves — two in each half.

With their fifth straight win, the Raiders improved to 10-5-2 overall and wrapped at 7-3-2 in the Cascade Conference. They’ll take the No. 5 seed to the eight-team CCC Championships presented by U.S. Bank, which is slated to begin on Nov. 12 in Springfield.

The CCC Tournament bracket will be announced after the regular season concludes for all teams on Sunday.

The game was played on the Raiders’ terms as they racked up a 16-8 shots advantage. They had four on goal, led by Kaya Baird’s two.

Their previous wins against nationally-ranked opponents were banked in August, against then-No. 25 Westmont (Calif.) and No. 11 Vanguard. In the latest coaches’ poll, Westmont is No. 8 and Vanguard is No. 13.

The Eagles (13-5 overall, 9-3), who sat in first place a week ago, lost their third consecutive game.

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