Friday, October 9, 2009

Home field is sweet for Cutthroat soccer teams

High Desert tourney starts Saturday

Doing better in the close games this year and down the season’s homestretch, The Community School boys’ varsity soccer team earned a homefield game in the High Desert Soccer Conference tournament with a 2-1 victory over Declo Wednesday at Elkhorn’s Browning Field. Seniors honored in their final regular-season home game Wednesday were, from left, Paul Davis, Bob Mollineaux, co-captain Tanner Flanigan, Jackson Bates, Wyatt Bunce and co-captain Tyler Davis. Photo by David N. Seelig

Community School boys' and girls' soccer teams won "Senior Night" games with Declo's Hornets Wednesday at Elkhorn and looked ahead to hosting first-round games in the High Desert Soccer Conference tournament Saturday.

The Cutthroat girls whipped Declo 6-0 for their ninth shutout of the season. Coach Kelly Feldman's Sun Valley squad stayed unbeaten in their last 11 HDSC games since a 4-0 loss at league-leading Filer Aug. 25.

Senior Nellie Brown (11 goals, 23 career) remained the most consistent scorer down the season's homestretch by scoring twice against Declo. She has scored at least one goal in five of the last six Fish games. Freshman Ellie Swanson (10 goals) added two goals.

Erica Eshman (20 goals, 38 career) added a single goal and three assists, while junior Daniela Stokes tallied her first goal of the season Wednesday in the home Sagewillow Farms game.

Seeking their ninth consecutive state tournament berth, the #2-seeded Cutthroat girls (10-4-2, 9-1-2 league) will kick off their HDSC tournament run Saturday against #7-seeded Gooding (0-11-1, 0-11-1) on the Sagewillow Farms pitch.

The winner will advance to a 4:30 p.m. Tuesday clash with the winner of Saturday's game between #3-seeded Buhl (8-2-3, 7-2-2) and #6 Declo (2-8-4, 2-8-2). That game would be played in Elkhorn if the Cutthroats win Saturday's game with Gooding.

In the other Saturday game, Wendell (5-9-0, 5-7-0) will play Bliss (4-7-1, 4-7-0 league). That winner will travel to top-seeded Filer (11-2-5, 9-0-3) Tuesday. Last year, Buhl beat The Community School 4-3 in the HDSC championship game, with Filer settling for third place.

Boys sneak into fourth place

Beating Declo 2-1 and earning the fourth seed of the seven-team boys' tournament was an accomplishment for coach Richard Whitelaw's Cutthroat boys. They've made progress compared to last season, when they placed fifth in the regular season and missed out on hosting the all-important win-or-go-home first-round game.

Senior captain Tanner Flanigan (8 goals season, 56 career) and sophomore Will Brokaw scored for the Cutthroats. "Man of the Match" was sophomore Colin Waycott.

The Cutthroats (4-7-4, 3-5-4 league) will host #5 Buhl (2-9-2, 2-8-2) on Saturday—the loser eliminated and the winner traveling to #1 Bliss (12-1-0, 11-1-0) Monday, Oct. 12 at 4:30 p.m.

Saturday's two other first-round games are #2 Gooding (10-1-1, 10-1-1) hosting #7 Filer (1-14-2, 1-9-2), and #3 Wendell (8-4-3, 7-3-2) entertaining #6 Declo (2-11-1, 2-9-1). Championship game is Wednesday, and the second-place state-qualifying game is Friday, Oct. 16.

Wendell's boys won their first HDSC title last year 2-0 Bliss, with Gooding in third. This year, the Cutthroat boys will be looking to knock off a higher seed or two and make the state soccer tournament for the ninth time in 11 years.

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