The Pirates begin their quest for a state title on Saturday at 4 p.m. in Anacortes against Friday Harbor in the quarterfinals of the State 1B/2B girls soccer tournament.
Adna suffered their lone loss of the season on Saturday, falling to Kalama 2-0 in the district championship game.
The loss may have helped the Pirates going into the state tournament, with the team mantra being ‘Alone, we’re strong. Together, we’re unstoppable.’
“This time of the season, team’s start figuring you out. We have to adapt to that. It’s one of those things where, at the state final four, we’ve beaten a lot of the teams, and then we get to the final four and we get stuck a little bit and can’t get past that,” Adna coach Juli Aselton said. “Whatever we’re doing, the coaches and I have talked and we didn’t want to lose, but losing gives our team that focus. What can we do, they’re talking to each other and figuring out how we can make this better.”
Before the loss, the Pirates were 17-0 and had outscored opponents 85-3 in those games, including 15 shutouts.
After watching the film from the district title game, the team knows what they need to correct going into Saturday.
“We spent a good two hours watching that film. The girls took it seriously, they watched the film on Hudl before we watched it together,” Aselton said. “It’s so much easier to see it once it was on video, where they were leaving gaps or not marking somebody.”
Friday Harbor won the league title and district tournament. The Wolverines are 12-0-3 this season and have outscored opponents 62-11.
“Coach Patrick (Richardson) is good about keeping his eye out for the teams on the other side. He watched their game, we know they've got a couple fast forwards,” Aselton said. “Their team is athletic looking. We’ll come in and try to play our game, unlike what we did on Saturday, just looking for holes in their defense.”
The team is making the long trek to Anacortes on Saturday and the team is healthy going into the game. Aselton hopes the bus ride will provide nap time for the Pirates to be well rested for the 4 p.m. game time.
When asked how Adna would win the game, it was a simple answer with a detailed explanation: score more than the other team.
“We didn’t take a whole lot of shots, that is more of our thought for this next weekend. Anybody can score, we have 27 girls and anyone can be the one that’s scoring,” Aselton said. “We’re taking long shots in practice and they’re beautiful. In a game, they forget they have that strong of a foot. They need that mentality of, ‘Hey I have a look at the goal, I might be able to just take that shot.’ We’ve worked a lot on that.”
Onalaska Prepares for First Game in State Tournament
The Lady Loggers are in the big dance for the first time in school history and take on Liberty Bell at 6 p.m. on Friday in Winthrop to open the State 2B girls soccer tournament.
Onalaska will make the more than five hour drive to get to Winthrop for their game on Friday.
“We’re ready to go. The girls are really excited and happy to be going,” Onalaska coach Chris Van Clifford said. “They’re jacked up and ready to roll, going so far away puts an edge on it. They’ll be excited to be playing, it’s (the travel) not going to bother them one bit.”
The Mountain Lions are undefeated this season at 17-0, winning the league and district titles. Liberty Bell has outscored opponents 74-16 in their undefeated run.
Although the opponent is tough, Onalaska won’t be changing their gameplan going into Friday.
“I don’t think we’ll change a whole lot. We’ll get in a groove and do what we do,” Van Clifford said. “We’ve been working hard so I think we’ll be alright.”
Onalaska defeated Ocosta 1-0 on Saturday to earn the third and final spot into the state tournament. The Lady Loggers were without defender Payton Anderson and Van Clifford noted she’ll be back and ready to go against Liberty Bell.
If the Lady Loggers can do what they’ve been doing all season, Van Clifford thinks they have a chance to win and play in the final four next weekend.
“The more we play together, the better we do. If we’re really focused on being together and playing together and moving the ball, that will be the biggest deal for us,” Van Clifford said. “That would be unbelievable. At the beginning of season, we were talking about how to get to districts. Now we’re talking about how to get to the final four. It’s been a huge growing process, they’re excited and I’m excited too.”