4A girls soccer: Woodburn shocks No. 1 Gladstone 2-0 in quarterfinals
Woodburn High School's girls soccer team showed up at Gladstone on Saturday ready to play.
Make that more than ready.
Woodburn's Myranda Marquez and Alyssa Rios each scored a goal in the first 11 minutes as the Bulldogs stunned the top-seeded Gladiators 2-0 in the quarterfinals of the OSAA Class 4A girls soccer playoffs at Gladstone's Dick Baker Stadium.
Senior goalkeeper Carla Zamora stopped everything Gladstone fired in her direction to register her second consecutive shutout in the playoffs and help send the No. 9-seeded Bulldogs (12-2-2) into Tuesday's 6 p.m. semifinal against North Marion at Woodburn.
"We just had to come out and be first to every ball and we did that," Woodburn coach Andrea Whiteman said. "And I have no doubt moving forward that these girls can beat any team in the state if they play like they did today.
"We wanted it more. We wanted the ball and we wanted to win."
The Gladiators (14-2) were left with more questions than answers, wondering how the game got away from them so fast and why they struggled to get things turned in the other direction.
"We just didn't have a very good day," Gladiators coach Tyler Lewis said. "It was definitely a bad day to play our worst game of soccer this year.
"We just couldn't really get anything going. We were spraying balls all over, we couldn't find defenders in the middle of the field, and we couldn't get any bounces or breaks. It was just one of those days."
Marquez set up Woodburn's first goal in the sixth minute with a short corner kick from the right side to defender Alyssa Padilla, who drove the ball into the middle of the 18-yard box where Rios banged the ball out of midair and inside the left post for her first goal of the season.
"I was really surprised," said Rios, a freshman defender. "I thought it was an offsides and I didn't think it was going to go in, but … it went in and I'm happy it went in."
Gladstone keeper Aaliyah Asad said the play unfolded so quickly that the Gladiators didn't have time to react.
"There was a lack of communication," Asad said. "Part of that is on me not calling my posts off because if they had stepped up, maybe she wouldn't have been able to shoot it from so close.
"It was a good shot. It was a good corner and a goal to be proud of anytime you can score on a set piece like that."
Woodburn made it 2-0 on a transition rush in the 11th minute when Marquez, the sophomore midfielder, took a cross from freshman Litzy Gonzalez and drove the ball from the top of the 18 into the left side of the goal.
"I was open, so I volleyed it in," Marquez said. "It was a pretty big goal, because we knew Gladstone was going to give it everything they had after the first goal, so we wanted to keep scoring."
With a two-goal lead, most of the attention turned to Woodburn's back line of Lilly Duran, Caitlynn Spencer, Padilla, and Rios, who consistently stayed in front of the Gladstone attackers, keeping the Gladiators from putting significant pressure on Zamora in goal.
Gladstone had its chances, but Genae Vanek's free kick in the 17th minute went right into Zamora's hands, Denali Nelson's free kick in the 53rd minute sailed high, and Brianna Lewis' header off a corner kick in the 58th minute missed wide right.
Zamora also backpedaled to make plays on two shots on goal and came close to backing over the goal line with the ball in her hands, first on a bouncing ball from Brianna Lewis in the 55th minute, and again on a shot by Josie Landrus in the 63rd minute.
"We had a couple of breakdowns early and it was hard for us to get over Woodburn's defense and produce anything on offense," said Nelson, Gladstone's senior striker. "We weren't expecting to get scored on quite that early. We had a lot of time to get goals back, but we just couldn't manage to do anything.
"It was a pretty physical game and we had a hard time hitting through balls over, which we're usually pretty good at. Today just wasn't the day for it."
Saturday's loss marked the second time in three seasons that the No. 1 seed in the 4A girls soccer tournament has lost in the quarterfinals. Two years ago, top-seeded North Marion lost 2-1 in overtime to No. 9 Hidden Valley, which went on to lose 1-0 to No. 10 Valley Catholic in the final.
"I think the most apparent thing about that game is you can't rely on numbers and scores and records, because they don't paint an accurate picture," said Asad, the Gladiators senior keeper. "I mean, that's why people love and hate the playoffs is because of these big upsets like this.
"I don't think we played our absolute best, which is disappointing, but it happens in playoffs, and you can't underestimate anybody. That's my biggest takeaway from this."
Asad said it's possible the Gladiators got caught looking too far ahead and the possibility of playing in Saturday's 4A championship final at Liberty High School in Hillsboro.
"I can speak for myself, I definitely was," Asad said. "And it's hard not to when you have such big goals and aspirations. But you do have to take things one game at a time.
"If I could go back, I would definitely better mentally. I think we all could have done a little bit better with that."
Lewis, in his second season as Gladstone's girls coach, said this one would "sting for a while."
"To go far in this tournament, you have to have a good team, which we did, and you've got to stay healthy, and we picked up a couple of knocks the last couple of weeks," Lewis said. "And then the other thing you need is a little bit of luck, and it certainly wasn't on our side today.
"This one game certainly doesn't define our season. Being two-time conference champions and not losing a conference game in the last two years and being a good, successful team doesn't go away just because you had one bad day."
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