The Capital Cougars will not be playing on this season, though they had to play on long after regulation Thursday night.
Auburn Riverside junior defender Hannah Schatz scored the tying goal for in the 75th minute of regulation play. After the teams played through two five-minute extra periods without scoring, the tiebreaker was “kicks from the mark.”
The Cougars found the net on only two of their penalty kicks, while the Ravens knocked in four to earn a 5-3 victory at Mount Tahoma Stadium.
Auburn Riverside (13-6) advances to a 2 p.m. Saturday game against Wilson at Burien’s Highline Stadium, with the winner advancing to the state tournament beginning Monday at Sparks Stadium in Puyallup.
Capital finished its season with an 11-2-2 record. Through the disappointment, coach Adriana Montes found reason to look ahead.
“Like I was telling the girls, we have to take this energy to next season,” she said, “and feel that energy when it comes to these district games.”
The teams battled through a scoreless first half notable for how busy the Ravens kept Capital goalkeeper Rachel Cumberland. Cumberland, a senior, had four solid saves in the half, the most crucial when she stoned a breakaway attempt from point-blank range by Auburn Riverside’s Natalie Lake in the 23rd minute.
In the second half, it was the Cougars applying the heat early. Sophomore Sydney Wilson popped in the first goal in the 53rd minute when teammate Chloe Lamenzo’s try, after a nifty move left of the goal, ricocheted off the top post.
Capital had two serious chances to take a two-goal lead, but tries by Addison Peters in the 65th minute and Rachel Wofford in the 68th were repelled by Auburn keeper Katelyn Brown.
The persistent Ravens stepped up their attack as the regulation clock ticked away, and broke through with the equalizer when Schatz got behind the Cougars defense and punched it past Cumberland.
Montes had nothing but praise for her goalkeeper.
“Rachel has tremendous heart,” the coach said. “It’s going to be sad to see her go. She picked up the spirit of the team.”
Cumberland, for her part, will look back on this season with no regret.
“I’m so thankful for the time I’ve had with this team,” she said. “They’re the most amazing group of women I’ve known.”
After the shootout assured the Ravens the victory, the entire Cougars team ran to Cumberland and hugged and comforted their teammate.
“That shows you the character they have,” Cumberland said. “If you fall down, they pick you up.”