By Jeremy McDonald
DAYTON, Ore.– The girls of Blanchet Catholic and Dayton Girls soccer left it all out on the field in the Pirates 2-0 victory Saturday afternoon in the 3A/2A/1A Special District 2 District Title game.
The physicality, the drive, the passion was evident in Dayton’s 2-0 District winning victory to the Cavaliers. It was the last game of the year for Blanchet, who opted out of the postseason bracket while the Pirates were looking for some momentum for their drive in the postseason tournament to wrap up the six-week season.
“I think we had it in our heads that we needed to be strong and tough throughout the whole entire game, keep our heads in it. Normally we’re a first half team, but we played both halves really strong and we didn’t quit at all,” Dayton’s Keiley Myers said.
“We both really wanted it really bad and we were going to come out hard. People are going to get hit but we’re not afraid to get hurt, we’re a team. We come out hard and I’m proud of them, we always come in hard and it’s a 50/50 ball so it’s a fair game for anyone coming that way,” adds the Cavs Karla Diaz.
Diaz led the second half charge from the midfield trying to feed her forwards. Fighting for every loose ball as her Pirates counterparts were and seeing Rebecca O’Dell coming back in time-and-time again after being banged up throughout the game.
Challenging Dayton’s Adalynn Williams and her defense only to stop the barrage of Blanchet shots to keep the Cavaliers from tying the game up at one as the game drew to a close.
“It is hard but I’m proud of my team in this game, we tried but it just didn’t happen for us and I still think we played hard and competitive,” said Diaz, who got Second-Team All-League honors. “We talked during halftime that we’re coming out hard the first couple minutes. Every ball is our ball and that was our mindset.”
Diaz had a mid-range shot save with 6:25 left and a corner kick was stopped a few seconds left. A midfield foul moments later allowed Dayton to win a foot-fight, progressing it up to Myers who landed the sealing goal in the 77th minute, 3:27 on the clock to put the Pirates up 2-0 late in the Title bout.
“That was all luck, I wasn’t paying attention to be honest. I saw the post corner wide open and I just took it with my left foot, hoping it would go in,” said Myers, who got first-team All-League Honors and Co-Player of the Year honors. “(The win) was huge for us, it was so huge for us. Dayton has never won league champs and the tournament at the same time, we’ve ever won one and could never win both. This year we got both and it’s super great for us.”
Dayton opens the quarterfinals at home against Pleasant Hill Tuesday at 4:30pm. Winner plays the winner of Yamhill-Carlton and Santiam Christian Wednesday or Thursday.
Blanchet Catholic finishes the year 4-2-1.
Photos By Jeremy McDonald