La Grande's Sarah Rasmussen, left, and Mac-Hi's Kariss Carrillo tangle arms as the chase after the ball during Tuesday's Greater Oregon League 4A soccer match-up in Milton-Freewater.
Photo by Jeff Horner.
MILTON-FREEWATER — Mac-Hi opened a two-goal lead in the first 20 minutes of play to start Tuesday’s match against La Grande, but from there it was all Tigers as they scored seven consecutive goals to win, 7-2, in girls’ Greater Oregon League soccer.
La Grande (7-1 GOL, 11-1 overall) is ranked No. 3 of Oregon Class 4A schools and has just one blemish on its record — a 2-0 loss to the Pioneers (4-4, 6-4-1) on Oct. 17th.
“We beat them last Wednesday, so I think they were ready to get a win,” Mac-Hi coach Martin Martinez said of the Tigers. “We surprised them in the first half with the two goals, but they composed themselves and moved the ball around pretty well.”
Veronica Garcia opened scoring for the Pioneers with a goal on a Myrna Hernandez assist. Niomie Martinez added the second goal in the 20th minute on an assist from Kariss Carrillo and Mac-Hi was sitting pretty at 2-0.
Kayla Rasmussen and Jasmine Smith scored equalizing goals before the half was over, and the score remained at 2-all until Haley White poked in a third score in the 53rd minute.
“In the second half where it was 2-2, I told my girls whoever scored first was going to take it all the way, and that’s what happened,” Martinez said.
Rasmussen, who finished with a hat trick, added another goal off a penalty kick and, just minutes later, added another to break the game wide open, 5-2.
“They came hard at us,” Martinez said. “We got confident in the second half, thinking it was going to be a tie probably, but La Grande came to win. They deserve to win — they played hard in the second half.”
Smith added second goal of the night and Avery Stanton added another to reach the final tally as time wound down.
The Pioneers have one game remaining, a league match at Ontario Saturday at noon, before playoffs begin.
At third place in the GOL standings behind La Grande and Ontario, the Pioneers are not guaranteed a spot in the playoffs, but will instead have to play a play-in against a team that has yet to be determined to earn their way into the 16-team bracket.