Sophomore Andrew Graves was in the right place at the right time—twice—for the triumphant Wood River High School boys' varsity soccer team Wednesday in Hailey.
Graves tallied his first-ever Wolverine varsity goals on first-half headers in the box, and the reigning Great Basin Conference champions notched their first win of the 2011 season by a 2-0 score over the Canyon Ridge Riverhawks.
The Wood River defense, led by backs Zack Freeman, Trevor Brand and Jeffrey Espejo, held the Riverhawks at bay.
Freeman started Wood River's first goal by stopping a Canyon Ridge attack and sending an outlet pass to midfielder Liam Jablonski. He got it over on the wing to Rex Kelly, who passed ahead to sophomore Stephen Pfeiffer. Pfeiffer made the cross that Graves headed home at the 11-minute mark.
Pfeiffer was active, distributing the ball in the offensive zone and setting up scoring plays as the Wolverines had eight good shots in the first 40 minutes. Pfeiffer sent striker Alex Lopez in at 28 minutes, and Lopez chipped the fine opportunity just over the net. At 37 minutes, Pfeiffer passed to Jablonski on the left wing. And Jablonski centered to Graves for the insurance header.
Wood River coach Luis Monjaras said, "We've been working on the errors we've been making, and we fixed our defense. We also did a better job being first to the ball and applying double pressure. Now we need to do a little more work on finishing.
"The league is unpredictable right now. Anyone can win."
Wood River (1-3-0, 1-2-0 league) out-shot Canyon Ridge (4-2-0, 0-2-0 league) by a 12-3 margin for the entire game, with five corner kicks to just two for the Riverhawks. Senior goalkeeper Dylan Carey (4 saves) earned his first shutout.
Next Wednesday, Sept. 7, Wood River travels to Twin Falls (0-3-1, 0-1-0), a 1-0 loser to Minico (4-1-0, 3-0-0 league) on Wednesday. In another game, Burley blanked Jerome 2-0.
WRHS girls blank Riverhawks 3-0
Coach Jenni Conrad's Wood River girls fired 24 shots on goal and blanked the Canyon Ridge Riverhawks 3-0 in a Great Basin Conference game Wednesday in Twin Falls.
Posting its fourth shutout in five games, Wood River (5-0-0, 3-0-0 league) got two goals by sophomore Haley Montgomery (assists to freshmen Samantha Sutton and Timber Kelly) and an unassisted tally by freshman Lucy Brannon.
Montgomery leads the balanced-scoring Wolverine offense with six goals, two more than her freshman year total. Canyon Ridge (3-3-0, 1-1-0) lost for the first time in the league.
Wood River hosts the Twin Falls Bruins on Wednesday, Sept. 7 on the Hailey pitch in a rematch of last year's Great Basin Conference championship game won by Wood River.