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St. Mary’s blanks Henley in girls soccer

Emily Elmore and Lilli Knudsen have developed some early-season chemistry for the St. Mary’s girls soccer team.

Elmore scored two goals and Knudsen added one as the Crusaders defeated visiting Henley 3-0 in a nonleague match at U.S. Cellular Community Park on Thursday.

Elmore one-touched a pass from Emily Frank for a goal from eight yards away at the 15-minute mark as the Crusaders went into halftime with a 1-0 lead.

Knudsen created the opportunity for Elmore’s second goal 12 minutes into the second half. Knudsen delivered a crossing pass and Elmore nailed a shot into the upper V from 12 yards out.

The pair reversed rolls on the Crusaders final score when Elmore played the ball up the field and Knudsen made a diagonal run and converted from the top of the box.

“Those two are showing me a unique ability to create combinations with different styles of play,” said St. Mary’s coach Dave Potter. “It’s fun to see these connections develop.”

In St. Mary’s season-opening victory on Tuesday, Knudsen scored twice and Elmore had one goal.

Senior midfielder Frank and center defender Rose Alvarez also demonstrated cohesive play for the Crusaders (2-0).

“(Alvarez) and Frank feed off each other,” said Potter. “They have total trust and understanding where each other is and support one another.”

Viv Juncal and Emily Riehlman combined for the shutout in net.

“Each of the girls made impressive saves,” said Potter. “(Henley) has a couple of real strong-legged players and they hit some hard shots.”

GRANTS PASS 1, WEST ALBANY 0: At Albany, Kylee Dillon netted the lone goal as Grants Pass hung on in the nonconference game.

Dillon scored off Brooke Blacksmith’s pass inside the goalie box, where Dillon snuck the ball through the hands of the West Albany keeper.

ASHLAND 6, NORTH VALLEY 0: At Ashland, Faci Graham scored twice and Ia Balbuena had a goal and two assists as Ashland roared out to a 3-0 lead at the half en route to a nonleague win at North Mountain Park.

DEL NORTE 1, ILLINOIS VALLEY 0: At Crescent City, Calif., a breakdown in communication in the 50th minute led to Del Norte’s score.

Illinois Valley goalkeeper Chawna Crawford made nine saves.

BOYS SOCCER

GRANTS PASS 6, WEST ALBANY 1: At Grants Pass, Noah Heisser had two goals and two assists and Johathan Williams and Drew Van Delden scored two goals each in the season-opening win for Grants Pass at Mel Ingram Stadium.

West Albany took advantage of a defensive mistake to begin the scoring on Matt Yon’s goal in the 18th minute.

Williams scored unassisted for the equalizer at the 29th minute and Drew Van Delden tallied off an assist on Heisser’s header off a corner kick by Connor Cubic to give the Cavemen a 2-1 halftime advantage.

Grants Pass scored three goals in the first 15 minutes of the second half to take a commanding lead.

EAGLE POINT 3, NORTH VALLEY 1: At Merlin, Eagle Point rallied with three second-half goals in the nonleague game at Knights Coliseum.

Tyler Wanamaker had one goal and one assist for the Eagles (1-0).

Eagle Point tied the score 1-all in the 60th minute when Lucas Gomez received a through ball from Wanamaker and booted a left-footed shot from 15 yards past the outstretched hands of North Valley goalie Sonny Edwards.

Sophomore Christian Bustinza gave the Eagles the lead for good in the 70th minute. Bustinza dribbled through two defenders and scored the unassisted goal on a hard shot from nine yards out.

Wanamaker cleaned up a direct kick by junior captain Sebastian Tovar that Edwards couldn’t control to provide the Eagles a 3-1 lead in the 75th minute.

North Valley took a 1-0 lead at halftime on Trinidad Flores’ goal in the 11th minute.

Eagle midfielder Kevin VanDyke possessed the ball effectively and created opportunities and goalie Jonel Quintero made two saves in one-on-one situations that helped preserve the lead.

HENLEY 1, ST. MARY’S 0: Henley, last year’s Class 4A state runner-up, scored late in the first half but St. Mary’s led in possession, shots and corner kicks in a nonleague match at U.S. Cellular.

Lake Petersen converted off a stellar pass from Isaac Gonzales from around five yards out with four minutes remaining the opening period.

The Crusaders (0-1), the 3A state runner-up in 2013, outshot the Hornets, 7-3, and had four corner kicks to none for the visitor.

St. Mary’s senior striker Hunter Rothfus created some offensive opportunites and teammate Zack Lewis’ header 30 minutes into the contest hit the crossbar.

Midfielder Avery Kerwin did a good job distributing the ball for the Crusaders and Justin Hawkins, Jeremy Wu and freshman Justin Silsbee were outstanding on the defensive end.

KLAMATH UNION 1, ASHLAND 0: At Klamath Falls, Ashland couldn’t capitalize on some key scoring opportunities in the first soccer match Klamath Union has ever played at the school’s Modoc Field, which converted to artificial turf this year.

Ashland failed to clear the ball from its defensive zone and Mason Crawford scored at the 25-minute mark for the game’s only goal.