Central Valley’s young soccer team came of age Tuesday night.
The season-long growing pains were forgotten after a 1-0 district title win over Ferris that earned the Bears, who only have two seniors on the team, some redemption along with a District 4A title.
“I couldn’t be prouder of this young team – we were resilent and determined,” CV coach Andres Monrroy said as players and fans celebrated at Spokane Falls Community College.
The district title means a lot: the Bears (12-2) get a week off before hosting a regional championship game on May 13 against a team from the Mid-Columbia Conference. Almost as important, the Bears avenged two straight shootout losses to Ferris, the last coming on April 16 on their home turf.
“We took that one hard, and we feel we could have won that game,” said Monrroy, whose team reached the title game only after front-running Lewis and Clark lost its last two games of the regular season.
Now it’s the Saxons (also 12-2) who are shaking their heads after a controversial loss that sends them into a loser-out game Friday against Lewis and Clark, a 3-1 winner over Mead in the late game at SFCC.
Trailing 1-0 with two minutes left, the Saxons almost converted a throw-in. Forward Andy McCune sent a header to the left side of the goal, where CV goalkeeper Kendall Findley got a hand on the ball before bobbling it.
As the ball appeared to roll across the goal line, Ferris players began to celebrate – until the head official looked to his linesman and waved off the goal.
According to the rules, the entire ball must cross the line to count as a goal, which Findley insists didn’t occur. “I bobbled it a little bit … but I’m sure the whole ball was not in the goal,” Findley said.
Officials declined to comment.
The Bears had the better of it in the first half, with Brian Choate almost scoring in the opening minute. “We didn’t play well at all – this was one of our worst games,” Ferris coach Robin Crain said of a defense that appeared shaky early on.
The Saxons almost took the lead on a bicycle kick by Jonathan Galgalo in the 25th minute, but gave up the only goal of the match with two minutes left in the half.
As a long ball found its way over the Ferris defense, CV sophomore Chase Reidt was waiting. “I couldn’t believe it went over both of their guys,” said Reidt, who fired from 10 yards out and put the ball past Saxon keeper Braeden Weber.
The Saxons had several threats in the second half, including a breakaway in the 69th minute that was thwarted by another sophomore in Findley, who replaced injured Andrew Enzler last month.
Lewis & Clark 3, Mead 1: The Tigers regrouped in a big way in the second half to eliminate the Panthers and earn a rematch with Ferris on Friday.
After losing twice last week by a combined 8-0 to fall into the loser-out game, the Tigers (10-4) gave up a goal in the 10th minute to trail 1-0 at halftime. But they got a pair of goals two minutes apart, and another with 12 minutes left to keep their season alive.
Hunter King scored for Mead in the 10th minute, but Trevor Briggs, Henry Smaldon and Trevor Briggs answered for LC.