Wilsonville thought it saw about everything during its eight nonleague games.
But Scappoose threw a new wrinkle at the Wildcats last Wednesday as both teams opened Northwest Oregon Conference play.
"It was a weird game," Wilsonville coach Ian Reschke said. "We kind of slowly grew into the game."
After a slow start, the Wildcats scored two goals late in the first half and added two more in the second half to shut out Scappoose 4-0.
"The first 20 minutes, we were very lethargic and we were just trying to adapt to how Scappoose was presenting themselves, and it took us awhile to figure that out," Reschke said. "They were just sitting back a bit and we hadn't played against a team that played us like they did."
With five minutes remaining in the first half, Wilsonville senior forward Elijah Powlison finally got the Wildcats on the scoreboard, taking advantage of a Scappoose turnover in the back and putting the ball in the back of the net.
"They made a mistake in the back and we just pressed as a team and they made it easy for us," Powlison said.
Angel Ulloah Romero then kicked the ball off Scappoose's goal keeper's hands, which Greg Keswick finished on the rebound to give Wilsonville a 2-0 lead at halftime.
Twenty-five minutes into the second half, Powlison scored on another Indians' mistake in the back.
"When we won the ball in the first half we were just taking too much time transitioning and counter attacking, and we shouldn't even be thinking about it," Reschke said. "They did a much better job in the second half. We were just lacking on the finishing end of things, but I was pleased with how we defended, how we won 50-50 balls, how we were creating chances, we just weren't finishing those final opportunities. We'll continue to work on that in training, but nice to start with a win and build some confidence that way."
In the final five minutes, Powlison recorded the first hat trick of his career, scoring on a header off a corner kick.
"He's been playing hungry," Reschke said of Powlison. "He's a senior and he's only got six games left guaranteed, and I think he just sees the end of the road and wants to lay it all out and he's been working hard in practice and in games. He earned that."
The shutout was Wilsonville's second of the season and first since defeating Bend 4-0 in game one on Sept. 3.
"We want to press to keep goals to a minimum," Reschke said. "We got a little sloppy in preseason and let some goals in that we shouldn't have. This past week we've been talking about how are we going to shut teams down, and I thought the guys did a nice job. I'm confident this group will figure things out moving forward."
But Powlison knows the Wildcats will have to play better, especially with No. 1 La Salle Prep coming to Wilsonville this Thursday.
"We kind of played down to their level," Powlison said of Scappoose. "We definitely want to play better than that. I think we played down to their level a little too much, a little lethargic, but a wins a win. It was a good game, but we can play better."
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