By Jeremy McDonald
DAYTON, Ore.– Adalynn Williams and her Dayton Pirate defense were on a tear Saturday afternoon with a trip to the 3A/2A/1A State Semifinals on the line.
Sutherlin tested them, challenged them even. Dayton’s defense however, moved and adjusted when they needed to. Clogging the passing and shot lanes with Williams stopping those few opportunities that came her way to preserve the 3-0 victory over the Bulldogs on this day.
“It was both of us. My defense was very good today. The lineup was moving well, they were moving together and weren’t creating gaps for them to get through. Even if they did, I was there to clean it up, so it was all ok,” Williams said of the defense.
The Pirates defense has been one of the best in the field, holding their opposition to nine goals all season and Saturday was no different as they built a 2-0 halftime lead on Sutherlin. Taylor Wilson in the fourth-minute and Tana Williams added another in the 29th helped separate the two squads.
The score held for much of the second half as the Dayton defensive stronghold continued against the Bulldog aggressive offensive style.
“Our defense did awesome; they got a lot of good stops and (Sutherlin) only got a couple of shots off thankfully. It was definitely a team effort,” said Wilson.
Melissa Arroyo added an insurance goal in the 78th minute to punch the Pirates ticket to the 3A/2A/1A State Semi-finals, their first ever trip to the Final Four. The second Tuesday as their coaches put it.
Fortunately, it’s against a familiar opposition: Oregon Episcopal.
The Aardvarks defeated Riverside and defeated Dayton 2-1 in the squad’s first meeting back on August 26, a 2-1 decision at OES.
As awesome as this moment is, they know they want to get past the Aardvarks to reach the State Title Game next Saturday.
“We need to be more aggressive. Be first to the ball and we can’t let them settle the ball and have so much time to get good passes,” Wilson said.
Photos By Jeremy McDonald