ELKO, Nev. --Eventually something had to give between the South Tahoe and Truckee
girls soccer teams this season.
That something was one simple mistake on a single play in more than 80
minutes of soccer.
Brooke King took advantage of a missed trap in the first half and the
defending state champion, South Tahoe, edged Truckee 1-0, and earned itself
a trip into the Northern Division I-A championship game.
The victory came after both teams tied each other twice during the regular
season, and with two teams as closely matched as South Tahoe and Truckee,
something small had to decide a winner and loser.
"It came down to who took advantage of the first mistake and that's all it
was. It wasn't a spectacular play," South Tahoe coach Chris DeLeon said.
In the 22nd minute Jensen Smith booted the ball down the field where King,
anticipating a missed trap by the Truckee defense, moved up the field and
received the ball between the defender and goalie.
She one-timed the ball under goalie Cassandra Sawyer for the decisive goal.
After playing with a controlled-style of play, South Tahoe switched up its
gameplan Friday and continually booted the ball down the field. It worked on
its one goal.
"It's not usually our style, but it worked today," DeLeon said.
Truckee tried to answer in the second half, but always found itself a slip
on the grass or a bad touch away from getting a clean look at goal.
"It's very disappointing. We came so far this year and we played soccer
unmatched (by our opponents). We played skilled soccer, and we didn't just
boot the ball," Truckee coach Katie Jamison said.
Many of the strongest chances came from captain Olivia Duner. The center
midfielder "ran the show out there," said Jamison.
On defense, Sawyer finished with 12 saves in the match for Truckee.
It was the second year in a row Truckee has fallen in the Northern semifinal
round. Last year, it lost to Elko.
Also, for the second year in a row, South Tahoe advances to the championship
game. This year, the Lady Vikings did it despite losing two of its captains
Cassidy Jackson was the first captain to go down and Alisa Caro became the
second, Thursday, when she was ruled out for this weekend's games.
"The girls had to step it up and they have," DeLeon said.
South Tahoe faces Elko today at 10 a.m. for the championship match. Elko won
last year's regional championship game 2-0, but later lost in the state
championship rematch to South Tahoe, 3-0.
South Tahoe is on a 15-game undefeated streak with its last defeat coming to
Elko, a 2-1 loss, on Sept. 8.
South Tahoe is 18-1-2 and 8-0-2 on the season. Truckee finishes the season
at 18-4-3 and 7-0-3 on the season. Truckee graduates nine seniors.