Titans Win First Game Of Year

By Jeremy McDonald

jeremymcdonald73@gmail.com

SALEM, Ore.–  The West Salem offense has probably found a groove Monday night against Franklin that they can build from.

After scoring two goals in their first four games, uncharacteristic of the Titans of the past two seasons, West Salem came around for four goals in their 4-0 victory over the Lightning.

Even their four goals to start the week seemed low with ten shots on goal and a few other opportunities from corner kicks and missed passes that would have pushed the lead more into their favor.

What’s interesting too, four different Titan girls scored in the game.  Darian Ehrmantraut struck first in the 26th, Veronica Orozco two minutes later as West led 2-0 at half before Maddy Endler (47th) and Morgan Dorsey-DuQuesne (60th) added to the lead in the second half.

“It’s a really good feeling because we’ve been working really hard before preseason, going into preseason and going into league, we’ve been putting in a lot of effort,” Endler said.  “It’s been tough coming out of these last couple games with losses because we felt like we’ve been competing with the teams, but to get a win tonight feels great.

After scoring twice in their first four games, the Titans produced four goals and their defense produced their first shutout for their first win of the season against Franklin (Picture By Jeremy McDonald)

“We just need to come off of the momentum from this game.  There were a lot of things we were working on in this game that showed.  Connecting on passes, playing quicker and just being more positive on the field in general and communicating.  I think if we bring that into our next couple of games that it’ll really show and we’ll start to click.”

It’s been a tough preseason to say the least as they started the season 0-4.  Sunset, Lincoln, South Eugene and Jesuit were all playoff teams back in 2019 with the Titans, Axe and Crusaders all in the 6A State Semi-Final. 

Outside of the 4-0 defeat to Jesuit back on Thursday, games have been of the close one-two goal variety with Mountain Valley Conference-play started September 28 at South Salem.  But Monday’s 4-0 win was a good confidence builder as West Salem started to play more together as their shots were starting to fall.

“We’ve got to find the identity of what type of team we’re going to be and getting those goals gives us the confidence to take more risks to play better and at a higher intensity.  It’s a good building block for us,” Head Coach Benje Orozco said.  “There were some moments of really good soccer where the build-up play was there, the crisp pass was there.  One-two touch play going to goal and the girls did well finishing some of the opportunities.”

The Titans will host Westview Wednesday before traveling to Sherwood Monday to wrap up non-league play.

Photos By Jeremy McDonald

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