EMUNCLAW — If Saturday’s victory is any indication, the Wenatchee girls soccer team could be in for a good season.
The Panthers won 2-1 on the road against a Emunclaw team that defeated Wenatchee at its home and went on to compete at state last fall.
Although neither team has the exact same roster as 2012, Saturday’s road victory is still an encouraging sign for the Panthers.
“It’s a nice way to get out of the blocks early,” first-year coach John Springer said in a phone interview. “Especially the way they won it.”
Springer’s squad controlled the flow of the game with its center midfielders and center defenders and had a number of players contribute to take the victory.
Taylor Butcherite scored off an assist from Katie Mischkiosky with five minutes left in the first half to give Wenatchee a 1-0 lead.
Emunclaw scored the equalizer with 60 minutes gone and Emily Rader scored the game-winner off an assist from Butcherite at the 70 minute mark.
Springer was happy with his team’s effort from start to finish.
“It was a great win,” he said. “We played a very good team. They came out on the attack early on and our girls gave an incredible effort and held off the attack early and really just kept after it all day long. It was amazing.”
Keeper Jackie Bollinger’s 14 saves played a big part in the win as well. The Panthers finished the contest with eight shots on goal.
Chiawana 5, Eastmont 0
The Wildcats allowed four first-half goals, including a hat-trick to one particularly speedy Chiawana player, which they couldn’t overcome in their season-opener.
“This is why we do the non-league games to figure out what we’re doing well and what we need to work on,” Eastmont head coach Erin Kavanaugh said after the game.
A bright spot for the ’Cats was goalkeeper Savannah Jackson, who had 13 saves.
“They got a few in the net but she had 13 saves and over half of them were one-on-one,” Kavanaugh said.
Next for the Wildcats is their cross-river rival Wenatchee at Eastmont Stadium on Thursday.
Cashmere 3, Ephrata 1
The Bulldogs came out on top in a physical contest that coach Dennis Tronson likened to a playoff-esque contest.
Both sides played with physicality and pushed each other from start to finish, but the battle-tested Bulldogs, who have 11 seniors back from last year’s playoff run, got the best of the Tigers on Saturday in the season-opener.
“(It was) very physical up and down the field,” Tronson said of the play. “It was hard fought.”
Ephrata got on the board first with a score from Kendal Sage off an assist from Haley Berryman at the 23 minute mark, but the lead was short-lived.
Molly Thies scored the equalizer for Cashmere just before halftime, Tiana Helm gave the team a 2-1 lead on a penalty kick and Kandance Brunner scored off an assist from Dani Morseman with 69 minutes gone to expand the lead.