Two soccer teams on the rise met in the round of 16 of the state Class 1A tournament Monday 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,” Cruisers coach Mike Williams said.
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.
Eatonville moves on to face King’s in the 1A quarterfinals at a time and day to be determined.
Rochester finished the season at 15-4.
“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 on midfielder Sierra Seymour’s goal.
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.
“Now that we have this behind us,” Williams said, “we’ll be firing on all cylinders.”
Olympia 2, at Edmonds-Woodway 0: Maggie DeBell and Jenna Killman scored as Olympia (14-3) earned its first state tournament victory since 2005 at Edmonds District Stadium.
Goalkeeper Sophie Kabel withstood a second-half attack by Edmonds-Woodway (14-3) to earn the shutout.
At Skyline 2, Curtis 0: Bianca Saint put in a loose ball in front of the Vikings’ goal off a corner kick in the 29th minute for the game-winner, and the two-time defending 4A champions won in Sammamish.
The Spartans (14-1) are 11-0 in first-round matchups in the state playoffs. They added an insurance goal by Jordan Branch off an Amanda Johnston assist in the 76th minute.
Curtis finished 14-4.
Inglemoor 1, at Kentridge 0: In their first trip to the state playoffs since 2001, the Vikings (12-2) scored the lone goal in the 65th minute and ousted the SPSL North champions at French Field.
Kentridge (13-2) is 0-4 all-time in opening-round matches.
At Kamiakin 3, Peninsula 0: After an even first half, ninth-grader Rilee Castilla’s goal in the 50th minute opened the floodgates, and the Braves (19-1) won at Lampson Stadium.
Castilla’s tally gave Kamiakin a 1-0 lead. And five minutes later, the Mid-Columbia Conference champions added two goals in three minutes against the Seahawks (12-7).
At Bellevue 5, Bonney Lake 0: Isabelle Butterfield tallied two goals, and the Wolverines (15-3) built a 3-0 lead at halftime to win their first ever state playoff game.