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Vikings junior Sophia Broberg scores four goals in the game's first 43 minutes.

PMG PHOTO: WADE EVANSON - Forest Grove senior Venezia Pazos Castaneda battles a Tigard defender for the ball during the Vikings' match versus the Tigers Wednesday, Sept. 29, at Forest Grove High School.Sometimes it's just your night, but on this night it looked like much more than that, and the Forest Grove Vikings girls soccer team appears to be a team to be reckoned with.

The Vikes (5-1-1) scored every which way in a 7-1 win over Three Rivers League foe Tigard Wednesday night, Sept. 29, at Forest Grove High School. But despite the obvious offensive aptitude on this night, it's the defense that Vikings head coach Ignacio Olvera said his team leans on game-to-game.

"Our strength is definitely our defense," Olvera said. "They don't like to lose the ball, and when you have forwards up on top that play as defenders, it makes a huge difference."

One of those forward players is Sophia Broberg, who had a night versus the Tigers (2-4). The junior scored Forest Grove's first four goals, two by way of her head on first half set pieces. Broberg said she'd done as much before in youth soccer, but had never put as many in the net during a single high school game. Yet, despite her success, it was the team and her part on it that she was more concerned with afterwards.

"It felt pretty good," Broberg said regarding her contribution. "This is a really great team and I'm really lucky to be a part of it."

She said the strength of the team was its cohesiveness, and it's that closeness and understanding of each other's tendencies that allow them to work so well together.

"We definitely understand each other, can read each other on the field, and I think that really helps us set each other up for good plays," she said. "We really connect in practice and because of that, our failures become our strengths."

And there weren't many failures on this night.

Broberg got the scoring started just three minutes into the match when she headed a corner kick in from the box to put the Vikings ahead 1-0.

The Tigers held the high-octane Vikes at bay until the 21st minute when Broberg again netted a goal, this time connecting from a near impossible angle about 15 yards out from the right side of the 18-yard box.

PMG PHOTO: WADE EVANSON - Forest Grove's Sophia Broberg scored four goals during the Vikings' match versus the Tigers Wednesday, Sept. 29, at Forest Grove High School.Next, Broberg scored on a second header – again off of a set piece from the right corner – in the 34th minute to make it 3-0, and when the junior finished a free kick in front of the Tigard goal just three minutes into the second half, the flood gates were officially open.

Camilla Contreras Bran scored a minute later.

Sophomore Elise Broberg scored nine minutes after that.

And when Kathleen Wyborny netted a penalty kick in the 74th minute, it was 7-1 and the Viking celebration was on.

"One of the things that really pleases me about this team is that they win the ball," Olvera said. "When they make a mistake, they get it back. They put a lot of pressure on their opponents and a lot of teams can't do that."

The coach went on to speak to the team's competitiveness as an asset, saying that they're not afraid to push each other in practice in an effort to make each and every one of them better – which he said is instrumental in doing just that.

Defensively, they've only allowed five goals in seven contests, which is due in part to Coach Olvera's aforementioned defensive prowess, in addition to the goalkeeping of junior Aleena Calvert. But more importantly, the coach said they're getting better with every game, and that's exciting as they continue forward towards what they hope will be an appearance in and long run through the state playoffs.

"Up to now I'm happy," Olvera said. "We're building and getting better every game, but we've struggled at times to put games away. There's plenty of work to be done, but I think we're moving in a good direction."

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