The Philomath High girls soccer team worked through challenging weather conditions Tuesday and put away visiting Cascade, 5-0, to keep pace with first-place North Marion in the Oregon West Conference.
Since falling to the Aurora school on the road Sept. 28, the Warriors (8-2 overall, 5-1 Oregon West) have outscored their last three opponents, 21-0. Philomath will play Thursday at Newport before hosting the Huskies (8-2, 6-0) Tuesday in a rematch with the conference title on the line. North Marion, sitting at No. 3 in the most-recent OSAA rankings, beat Newport Tuesday, 5-2. Philomath is ranked No. 8.
A collection of photos from Philomath High School’s 5-0 girls soccer win over visiting Cascade on Tuesday.
Philomath and Cascade battled each other hard in the first half Tuesday afternoon with wet field conditions causing some frustrating moments for the home team. Still, the Warriors held a 2-0 advantage at the break on goals by senior Kamilla Grimmer and junior Petra Hernandez. Sophomore Ana Candanoza and junior Natalie Dunn had assists on those plays.
The elements have impacted Philomath’s last two home games in different ways — extreme heat on Thursday against Stayton and rain on Tuesday against Cascade.
“I think that was a struggle all game long with just our style of play — trying to play controlled,” Phelps said. “Finding our feet can be a little challenging when it’s hard to get your footing but I think the girls responded really well.”
Philomath came out in the second half and scored its next three goals over a span of just six minutes.
“We played much better as a team staying connected, finding feet and playing off each other,” Phelps said. “Defensively, we were good all game.”
Junior Sophia Bauer put the Warriors up 3-0 in the 42nd minute on a left-footed shot with an assist by Grimmer. Two minutes later, Bauer scored again with a header set up by a pass from senior Bailey Bell. The team’s last goal occurred in the 48th minute with junior Isabel Morales-Marquez finding the net with an assist by Grimmer.
Philomath had a little bit of a scare in the first half when goalkeeper Heidi Bacho went to the ground. Junior Kateri Pindell came in to play goal but only for a matter of seconds before Bacho re-entered the contest.
“The rule is that you’ve got to bring them off if the coach comes to check them out (on the field),” Phelps said. “She just got a little knock from the opposing player but she’s good.”
Philomath’s game at Newport Thursday is scheduled for a 6 p.m. start.