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Forte’s late goal lifts North

ROSEBURG — Caleb Forte scored with 21 seconds remaining in the match, lifting the North Medford boys soccer team to a 2-1 victory over Roseburg on Saturday.

In a key Southwest Conference contest for the Black Tornado (3-2, 3-1 SWC), Forte broke free from a defender after receiving an over-the-top ball from Jason Cruz, allowing Forte to beat Roseburg’s keeper one-on-one.

“We were all celebrating and hugging each other on the bench,” North coach Michael Belzberg said.

North grabbed the lead in the 30th minute when Forte was fouled inside the box, setting up a penalty kick by Mauricio Paz.

The Indians (2-4, 1-4) picked up the equalizer in the 50th minute after North botched a defensive clear, allowing a Roseburg forward to beat the keeper with a top-shelf ball.

A loss to Roseburg would have been a major setback to North’s conference title hopes, Belzberg said.

“For us now, we go into Grants Pass and if we get a good result, we’re tied for first,” he said. “This game really puts us up in the top-three instead of in the middle. We’re kind of in the hunt again. We pulled ourselves up, I guess.”

Angel Zamora was a standout for North at the center-mid position, providing consistently tough defense and winning 50-50 balls.

GRANTS PASS 3, SOUTH MEDFORD 0: Grants Pass scored all three of its goals in the first half while shutting out South Medford to pick up a SWC victory.

Jude Pannell, a freshman keeper, kept the score from getting out of hand for the Panthers (1-5, 1-4 SWC), who played a lackluster first half and then gave a much more solid effort after halftime, South coach Claudio Villa said.

The Cavemen (5-1-1, 4-0-1) remained atop the SWC standings with the win.

EAGLE POINT 2, NORTH EUGENE 0: At Eugene, Eagle Point scored both of its goals in the second half to win its Midwestern League opener against North Eugene.

Martin Hernandez scored from 20 yards out in the 48th minute with an assist from Erasmo Perez to put Eagle Point on top 1-0.

The Eagles (3-4, 1-0 MWL), who won back-to-back games for the first time this season, tacked on an insurance goal in the 79th minute when Perez scored with an assist from Hernandez, slipping the ball under the keeper with a low shot from 5 yards out.

Keeper Gio Rodriguez and center defender Alex Angel were standouts for Eagle Point, which had to limit its substitutions due to playing without two of its starters.

SPRINGFIELD 3, CRATER 1: At Central Point, Crater freshman Colton Bryant scored in the 37th minute to trim the Comets’ deficit to one goal but they couldn’t crack Springfield’s defense from there in the Midwestern League match at Dutch Meyer Field.

Springfield (4-3, 1-0 MWL) scored twice in the first 29 minutes before Bryant corralled a through ball and ripped a 30-yard shot past the keeper for Crater (2-3-1, 0-1).

The Millers added an insurance goal in the 59th minute against Skyler Allen, who made 11 saves after moving up from the JV squad to replace Joaquin Valle. Valle suffered a concussion in Tuesday’s match and isn’t expected to return for another week for a Crater team that already has first-string goalie Orfanel Aguirre playing in the field due to his own injury issues.

ASHLAND 4, CHURCHILL 1: At Eugene, Ashland scored all four of its goals in the opening 28 minutes to overpower Churchill and win its MWL opener.

The Grizzlies (5-0-1, 1-0) squashed any offensive efforts by Churchill in the first half behind a dominating defensive effort by Leo Duetz, Scott Gustafson, Declan Hinkley and Ian Rinefort, setting up numerous scoring chances.

Joe Holden twice found the back of the net in the opening 10 minutes, scoring first with an assist from Rinefort and later off a rebounded shot.

Jahnoi Hall scored the next two goals for Ashland, in the 13th minute with an assist from Jade Boucher and in the 28th minute with an assist from Duetz.

The Lancers (0-5, 0-1) ended the shutout bid in the 54th minute with a 20-yard free kick by Harper Neubeck.

CANYONVILLE CHRISTIAN 2, CASCADE CHRISTIAN 1: At Canyonville, Cascade Christian took an early lead but was unable to hold off Canyonville Christian in a District 5 match.

Kevin Wayda scored from 20 yards out in the 10th minute with an assist from Kyle Reece to put the Challengers (2-2, 2-2 Dist. 5) on top 1-0.

The Pilots (3-1-1, 3-0-1) got the equalizer in the 28th minute when Axel Ndagijimana found the back of the net on a penalty kick.

The game-winner came in the 76th minute when Canyonville Christian launched a corner kick that ping-ponged off several players in a wild, dizzying sequence.