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Hidden Valley girls back in state title game

MURPHY — It's deja vu for the Hidden Valley and Marist girls soccer teams.

They will meet for the Class 4A/3A/2A/1A state championship on Saturday in a rematch of last year's title game, which the Mustangs won, 2-1. The championship is at 3:30 p.m. at Wilsonville High.

Hidden Valley advanced with a 3-2, overtime victory over Valley Catholic Tuesday in the semifinals. Afterward, it was clear the Mustangs weren't taking a ho-hum approach to their second straight title appearance.

"It's pretty exciting stuff," said Hidden Valley assistant coach Robin Swanburg. "They knew (they are going to the championship game). There were tears, tears of joy. They worked really hard for it."

In the other state semifinal, Marist defeated La Salle, 2-0.

After Hidden Valley (13-2) and Valley Catholic played to a 2-2 deadlock through regulation, the Mustangs' top scoring threat, Denise Powell, provided the deciding shot in a rapid-fire exchange at the Valiants' goal in the seventh minute of overtime.

Rachelle Slick fired a cross that caromed off the crossbar to Ashley Seal, who returned a shot but saw it bound off the bar. Powell then moved in and capped the barrage with her goal.

"It was a hard-fought game," said Swanburg. "The other team was really good. Our girls came out fired up and played with a lot of heart. They gave it everything they had on that field."

Valley Catholic, the No. 1 team out of District 1, opened the scoring in the 13th minute on a goal by Lacey Krebs.

Forty minutes went by before the Mustangs, No. 2 in District 6, knotted the score on a Jessie Hanger goal following an assist from Powell.

The two teams then traded penalty kicks midway through the second half, the Valiants scoring first and Seal answering in the 60th minute to tie it at 2-2.

Now it's on to the rematch.

"They lost some players and we lost some players," Swanburg said of Marist. "It ought to be a really good game. We know some of their key players."

Boys Class 4A Playoffs

MCLOUGHLIN 4, HIDDEN VALLEY 2 — At Milton-Freewater, Hidden Valley got the jump on McLoughlin, the two-time undefeated state champion, but the Pioneers stormed back in the semifinals.

Senior captain Taylor Willi scored unassisted 3:11 into the contest for Hidden Valley, the top seed from the Skyline Conference.

But McLoughlin scored the next three goals to take command. For the Pioneers, Esteban Salazar scored in the 21st minute, then Jose Corona tallied at 30:40 and 34:25.

The Mustangs (12-4) pulled within 3-2 moments later when a Corey Dean header off a brilliant pass from Robbie Erkeneff found the net. Erkeneff's somersaulting throw-in carried across the field and found his teammate.

Salazar added an insurance goal in the 49th minute for McLoughlin, which faces Gladstone Saturday for the championship.

Hidden Valley had 13 shots on goal to nine for the host.

GLADSTONE 1, HENLEY 0 — At Klamath Falls, Henley came up one win short of the state title game, falling to Gladstone, the No. 1 team out of District.

The semifinal loss ended Hornets ended the season with a 14-6 record. They were the third-place team from the Skyline Conference.