Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Riverhawks edge WRHS girls in shootout, again

Great Basin tourney starts Thursday


     Last Thursday’s Great Basin Conference girls’ soccer shootout in Twin Falls turned into a little dejà vu for Wood River—a 1-1 (5-3 penalty kicks) Canyon Ridge victory reminiscent of an earlier game.

     Canyon Ridge also won a shootout in Hailey 1-1 (5-4 kicks) on Sept. 16, all of which caused Wood River coach Doug Stouffer to scratch his head after last week’s latest setback and explain how it felt.

     Stouffer said, “It hurts when you lose a game like this…… twice.”

     The outcome also hurt Wood River because Canyon Ridge’s three points for the win assured the ‘Hawks (9-6-1, 7-2-0, 21 points) the second seed and first-round bye in the six-team GBC league tourney starting Thursday, Oct. 7.

     It gave Wood River (9-4-0, 6-3-0, 18 points) the third seed and a date with the No. 6-seeded team, the Jerome Tigers, on Thursday, Oct. 9 for a first-round tournament game on the Hailey field.

     That game will likely start at 4:30 p.m., although a 2:30 p.m. start is possible if the Wolverine boys are also hosting a game in Hailey.

     And it meant that the Wolverines with a win against No. 6 Jerome Thursday would play Canyon Ridge again Saturday, Oct. 11 in the GBC second round of games at SunWay Soccer Complex in Twin Falls.

     Wood River hasn’t done very well offensively in all its recent match-ups with Canyon Ridge—this season’s two shootout losses, last year’s 2-0 district tournament loss to the ‘Hawks, followed by a 1-0 Wolverine victory over Canyon Ridge for second place in the 2013 league tournament.

     It amounts to three regulation-time goals for Wood River in its last four meetings with Canyon Ridge.

     “As a group we have got to find a way to score more consistently with Canyon Ridge. I think when the district tournament comes around, we will be ready,” said Stouffer.

     Last Thursday, the Riverhawks scored first in the third minute when sophomore Clarissa Henderson made it 1-0 after a corner kick.

     In the 16th minute, Wood River sophomore Jesse Cole was manhandled in the penalty box and senior Samantha Sutton equalized with a penalty kick.

     It was 1-1 at half and 1-1 at the end of regulation time.

     Canyon Ridge made all five of its penalty shots in the shootout, starting with the player who had scored the deciding goal in Hailey—freshman Caitlin Crist.

     Other successful shooters were Courtney Stenger, Henderson, Caitlyn Trammell and Valencia Smith. Succeeding from the spot for Wood River were Olivia Thornton, Jesse Cole and Sutton.

     Stouffer said, “Overall we struggled a little with our defensive assignments in the first half but the girls settled in after the score evened out. I think Canyon Ridge lacks offensive punch but at the same time the Riverhawks frustrated our offensive players.”

     Three-time defending GBC tournament champion Twin Falls (12-3-0, 8-1-0, 24 points) hosted Burley in Tuesday’s regular-season finale, and the Bruins could face No. 4-seeded Burley (7-7-0, 4-5-0, 12 points) again in a second-round tournament game Saturday in Twin Falls.

     Both Jerome and Minico entered Tuesday’s final season games with just one league win apiece.

     The top two teams in the Great Basin tournament earn berths in the State 4A tournament Oct. 3 in Coeur d’Alene, while the third-place finishing team must win a state play-in game against the Boise-area third-place finisher Oct. 18 to make state.




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