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Behind two first half goals, Grant girls soccer held off Lincoln and won the PIL title.



A day after its volleyball team took home a share of the Portland Interscholastic League title, Grant High's soccer teams matched that feat.

At home, the girls took down Lincoln, who came in 5-0 in PIL play, 2-0 behind a goal each from Minami Powers and Caprial Loescher to capture the title.

Down at Buckman Field, the Generals' boys team also played Lincoln with the PIL title on the line where a second half goal from Mitchel Munzing was the difference.

For the No. 4 ranked Grant girls, taking down rival Lincoln and finishing the year 12-1-1 overall is a large accomplishment.

"We've been wanting this one for a few years now," Grant senior Elle Frazier said, also noting it was the Generals' first win over Lincoln during her four years. "I've been coming to watch Grant since I was little, and from what I know, this is one of the best seasons there's ever been."

Powers, a defender, got the scoring going early in the seventh minute when she launched a free kick nearly 40 yards right on goal and out of the outstretched arms of the Lincoln goalie.

Later, in the 30th minute, Loescher knocked one in from about 20 yards out in the middle of the field that went off the Cardinals' goalie's hands and into the net.

Those two goals leave Grant with 45 scored on the year, which currently would be the third most in Class 6A.

"I was aiming for the goal," Powers said on her deep shot. "I used to practice them (free kicks) a lot when I was younger and now I got to the point where anywhere in the 25- to 35-yard range I just put it down and it kind of goes in. It worked out today."

However, what might be more impressive than the team goals number is the amount of zeros the Generals have posted defensively.

Following their ninth shutout of the season on Lincoln, Grant gave up only six goals all year, the second fewest in 6A only behind Lake Oswego with three allowed.

"It's interesting because I have 28 people on the roster and we had to bring freshmen up because we had a lot of injuries, so we had to shuffle our defensive lineup quite a bit," Grant coach Manolis Tjuanakis said. "Throughout those changes, they were able to keep it together and I think it comes down to them being organized, also, something I'm very proud of … I have two very good goalkeepers."

Those two goalies are Abby Winkler and Michaela McCollum.

Both play every match with one getting one half of action, but no matter who's in net, the Grant defense knows they have someone who has their back.

"During practice, all of our shots that go in look really good but it's just because all of the ones that are even slightly off get saved because they're just so amazing," Powers said of the two goalies.

From Powers' perspective as a senior on defense, she said she appreciates the different age groups that Tjuanakis mentioned and thinks it provides different looks that mesh into one solid defense.

"We have people who are quick and also people who can think, so we have a real mix of different identities back there," Powers said. "We can all mix together and have our own strengths and weaknesses that we cover for each other."

The offense has been led by Frazier, who scored 25 goals in the regular season.

Frazier, who is heading to play in an All-American game in Tennessee come December, is the driver of the offense -- and it was easy to notice with the constant double-team the Cardinals placed on her Thursday.PMG PHOTO: JONATHAN HOUSE - Grant High girls soccer's Minami Powers, left, fights for the ball against Lincoln's Aimee Poole on Oct. 22, 2021, at Grant High School.

"She's been on a goal tear, something we're very proud of is she's going to represent us in the ninth All-American high school game," Tjuanakis said. "I'm very proud of what she has done because throughout the years she's been on varsity she has moved to different positions and she has performed well basically no matter where she's been played. Her and her (twin) sister Liv deserve huge credit for our success thus far."

Grant entered Thursday ranked No. 5 in the OSAA rankings, which will determine the seeds for the 32-team state bracket in 6A.

The Generals should stay in the top eight, meaning they could have two first-round matchups in the playoffs if they are able to survive round one.

And they'll be taking it one game at a time, but there's no denying the team's ultimate goal.

"Obviously we're super excited, but I think we'll have to, not reset, but settle down, calm down so we can focus on what's next and go on to win (state), too," Powers said.


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