Bulldogs give Blue Devils the boot

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Wa-Hi's Ricardo Saldana celebrates following his goal against Pasco four minutes into the district playoff game against the Bulldogs Tuesday at the Whitman College Field. Pasco rallied to win the game, 3-1.

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Pasco's Lucas Cash hammers into Wa-Hi's Ricardo Saldana, but keeps his hands clear during Tuesday night's playoff match-up. Pasco defeated Wa-Hi, 3-1.

WALLA WALLA - Wa-Hi's Ricardo Saldana scored a goal four minutes into the game, but the Blue Devils were unable to score after that as Pasco scored three times to win the district playoff game, 3-1, at the Whitman College field.

"We played horrible," Wa-Hi coach Mike Washington said. "Our defense was not responsible and we didn't play as a team. I'm very disappointed in them and I think they are disappointed as well. As they should be."

Saldana's goal was a dribbling breakaway, one-on-one with Bulldogs goalie Emmanuel Martinez. Martinez charged from goal and leaped towards Saldana. The Wa-Hi forward quickly kicked to the right of the keeper on the ground and into the right-hand corner of the net.

Before Pasco was able to score its first goal, Wa-Hi had another shot that just missed the goal 10 minutes into the game.

Defenseman Jose Saldana kicked a ball from about 40 yards out that bounced over goalkeeper Martinez.

The ball was about to go into the goal when a racing defensemen, Louis Poeppel of the Bulldogs, kicked it away.

With Wa-Hi still leading 1-0, Ricardo Saldana had another chance halfway through the first half. From about 25 yards from the middle of the field, he booted a shot towards the goal that was barely in reach of a jumping Martinez and batted over the top of the goal.

After several failed attempts at heading in a goal by Pasco, they finally suceeded with five and a half minutes left in the first half. Midfielder Martin Ramirez crossed a pass to midfielder Jose Cuevas, which Cuevas headed past Wa-Hi keeper Andrew Glaeser.

At the end of the first half, it was tied 1-1, with the shots advantage going to Pasco, 11-7. The Bulldogs had four on goal, the Devils three in the first 40 minutes.

In the game, Pasco outshot Wa-Hi 21-14, with the shots-on-goal advantage also going to Pasco, 13-7.

Glaeser would be credited with 13 saves in the game, but Pasco got two more past him into the goal in the second half.

Forward Richard Renteria of the Bulldogs beat everybody down field on a dribbling breakaway, Glaeser charged and leaped towards the ball, but Renteria's kick went to his left for the score 15 minutes into the second half.

The best second-half scoring chance for Wa-Hi came with 15 minutes remaining and the score 2-1. Ricardo Saldana took a shot that deflected off goalie Martinez. Blue Devil Marcos Medina then took the deflection and booted it towards the goal, but Martinez jumped on it.

Renteria scored his second goal of the second half off a header, assisted by Jovan Rojas, with 12 minutes remaining.

The game was postponed about 10 minutes in the second half, and then called with two minutes remaining in regulation due to thunder and lightning.

The Blue Devils play in a regional loser-out matchup on the road on Saturday. The winner advances to the state playoffs.

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