By Jeremy McDonald
STAYTON, Ore.– It is said that “The Grind” and the season are long one’s.
“the grind” is real and the Stayton High School Boys Soccer team can contest to that.
Following their 2-0 4A OSAA First-Round Victory over Cottage Grove, the number one Eagles have been spending the week getting healthy and preparing for their Saturday match-up against the seventh-ranked Junction City Tigers.
“We are banged up,” said Stayton Head Coach Chris Shields. “We have two possible starters who might not play so it will be the job of others to step and play well.
“We looked better this last week at practice, but the grind of the season is taking its toll.”
The team has been practicing on turf to grow accustom to the speed and feel of the game, especially at Sprague High School where they are playing again Saturday.
As for the team that is lining up against them, Junction City, have been known to score this season.
At 59 goals this season, they have four more goals than Stayton has scored.
“(Junction City) is a solid team with a lot of older players who are big and quick,” said Shields. “We will need to step up and overcome.”
The Eagles are used to dealing with high octane-offenses however with North Marion in Oregon West Conference play. Stayton had only permitted three of the Huskies 84 2015 goals in two games this year.
But the lone difference between the two is how their defense’s hold up as Stayton’s defense have allowed nine goals to the Tigers 27; if the Eagles can get pressure on goal by the Navarro cousins and Alex Cramer, along with strong defense, Stayton will be in the thick of things when the game draws to an end.
Kickoff is set for 2pm at Olympic Stadium at Sprague High School.
Jeremy McDonald is a professional sports journalist in the Salem/Portland area and is a member of the Society of Professional Journalist in Oregon with B.S. degrees from Southern Oregon University in Journalism (2011) and Health/PE (2013). Got a story idea? Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter at @J_McDonald81!
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