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Cottage Grove slips by Sweet Home in final seconds


October 25, 2017

Photo by Sean C. Morgan/ MILAH WELD grabs control of a loose ball.

Sweet Home concluded a tough girls soccer season with a last-second loss 2-1 to Cottage Grove Thursday evening at home and a 2-0 loss at Sutherlin on Oct. 17.

The Huskies finish the season 2-8 in fifth place in the Sky-Em League.

Liz Chelstad knocked in a shot for the Huskies about 16 minutes into the first half against Cottage Grove to give the Huskies a 1-0 lead.

Sweet Home stayed ahead the whole game, said Coach Ramiro Santana. At the end, “it got just a little bit out of hand. We were still winning when the game was over.”

The referee added eight minutes to the clock, Santana said, who had put senior exchange student Nadia Chumsri on the field after she had played in the first half of the junior varsity game.

Santana said the referee incorrectly believed that she had played more than half of the JV game and added the time to the clock.

Cottage Grove came back, pressuring the Huskies. Cora McKee was called for a foul just outside the goal area, and Cottage Grove kicked the ball right into the corner with less than two minutes left.

“Once they tied the game, they had to keep pressuring,” Santana said.

The second shot came just seconds before the clock ran out when a Cottage Grove player launched a shot from near the middle of the field. It soared over the defense and goalie into the net.

“They knew they had to do that,” Santana said.

On the road, Sutherlin scored a goal about 15 minutes into the first half, Santana said. The shot bounced off one of the Huskies into the goal.

Sutherlin scored its second goal about halfway through the second half, Santana said. Sutherlin brought the ball from the side across the goal and shot it in.

“We played good,” Santana said. “We had opportunities. We had all kinds of opportunities.”

One shot went through all the defenders, but it still missed, he said. The girls beat their defenders and missed a couple of times.

Sutherlin’s goalie had a several “incredible lifesavers,” he said.

The games close out a tough season during which the Huskies were fighting injuries.

“We played as best as we could,” Santana said. “We had a lot of injuries. We had five or six starting players that never got back into playing the game (healthy). We were playing hurt most of the season. They were playing, but they weren’t playing 100 percent. We did what we could. We were there with a lot of the teams.”

KEEPER NATALIE RODGERS stops a Cottage Grove shot.

More shooting accuracy would have changed things up, he said. That’s part of the mental game, and scoring a goal early would probably have led to more scoring, as the team saw a couple of times during the season.

As it stood, the team held its own against Elmira, Cottage Grove and Sisters, Santana said. “We could still be competitive. We played very tough.”

After going winless the first half of league play, the Huskies won games against Sisters and Elmira in the second half.

Junction City, 9-0-1, finished in first place followed by Sutherlin, 6-2-2; Elmira, 5-4-1; and Cottage Grove, 4-5-1. Sisters, 1-8-1, finished last.


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