ORTING — Two soccer teams on the rise met in the round of 16 of the state Class 1A tournament Tuesday night. But only Eatonville will get the chance to rise even higher after a 3-2 win against Rochester at Orting High School.
“We had to get a monkey off our back with a state win,” said Eatonville coach Mike Williams.
Eatonville won the state title in 2005 and reached the title game again in 2006, but it hasn’t been back to the tournament since. Last year, the Cruisers were eliminated in their first district match.
This year, the senior-laden Cruisers (18-1, 1A Nisqually League champions) used that as motivation, he said.
The Cruisers move on to face King’s in the 1A quarterfinals at a time and day to be determined.
Rochester finished the season at 15-4. Earlier in the playoffs, the Warriors beat Columbia-White Salmon and then lost to Elma when two own goals were costly in a game that came down to penalty kicks.
“It’s a great group of girls,” coach John Hayes said of his team. “We have so much fun.”
Hayes took over as coach four years ago, with Rochester coming off a 3-13 season. This year, the Warriors were champions of the 1A Evergreen Conference.
Eatonville found the net toward the end of the first half when Machaela Graddy controlled the ricochet of a teammate’s shot off
the right post and pushed the ball past Warriors goalkeeper Makayla Shank.
The Cruisers kept up the pressure throughout most of the first half, and it took good defensive plays by Warriors Caelyn Carew and Sam Jennings to keep the score from mounting.
Rochester tied the score late in the half when junior midfielder Sierra Seymour maneuvered free of a defender to the right of the goalmouth and punched it low into the left corner of the net.
Eatonville took a 2-1 lead into halftime on an impeccably placed free kick by K.K. Voss from 50 yards away, the ball arcing high and angling down just past Shank’s fingertips.
The speedier Cruisers continued to win most contested balls in the second half and kept near-constant pressure. Shank smothered several breakaway attempts.
“Our goalkeeper’s come up big all year,” Hayes said.
Eatonville’s Emily Boettcher finally broke through with a header into the net as she and Shank were side-by-side 15 yards away from the goal.
The Warriors weren’t done. An Eatonville foul set up a free kick for Camryn Althauser, and the senior forward — MVP of the EvCo and bound for Saint Martin’s University — buzzed it left-footed low and hard into the right corner of the goal with 3 minutes left in the match.
But that’s how it would end as the Cruisers advanced to the state quarterfinals.
“Now that we have this behind us,” Williams said, “we’ll be firing on all cylinders.”
Olympia 2, Edmonds-Woodway 0: For the third time this postseason, the Bears held their opponent scoreless en route to a victory, and Tuesday’s 4A first-round state playoff win at Edmonds District Stadium clinched the program’s first state quarterfinal berth since 2005. The Bears, winners of their past six games, host Inglemoor, a 1-0 winner over Kentridge, Friday or Saturday at Ingersoll Stadium.
Jenna Killman’s insurance goal in the 78th minute secured the Bears (14-3-2) the win after a 1-0 halftime lead from Maggie DeBell’s goal off a corner kick in the 19th minute.
Coach Tessa Effland said sophomore goalkeeper Sophie Kabel made “amazing saves” all game long. Kabel, at just 5-foot-5, recorded 10 saves after back-to-back playoff games against Thomas Jefferson and Puyallup in which Olympia won in shootouts after scoreless regulations and overtimes.
“I’m so incredibly proud of her, and her determination to keep us in this game,” Effland said. “Sophie has come up big in the last five games.”
Staff writer Meg Wochnick contributed to this report.