Klahowya reaches state 1A semifinals

Klahowya’s girls soccer team is guaranteed at least a fourth-place finish or better at the Class 1A state level after defeating Vashon Island 2-1 Nov. 10 to reach the semifinals.

The Eagles faced their league rivals four times this season, splitting the league games and defeating them in districts and at state. The Eagles provided offensive pressure nearly all game against their familiar foes, but the score stayed close as their shots just missed the mark.

Klahowya’s first attempt on the net came from a corner two minutes into the game. Klahowya piled up three more corners in the first 10 minutes. On the Eagles fourth attempt, Seraphina Bell headed the ball past the goalie to make it 1-0. Addyson Dickey fired another shot from around 30 yards out but it was saved easily. Amira Lyons created the next scoring attempt as she found Raven Stoner with a through ball. Stoner fired it past the goalie for a 2-0 lead.

Klahowya’s defense kept the pressure on, allowing one only shot in the first half. But that one shot came from Linnea Heuschert, who fired a free kick from 40 yards out over Eagle goalie Emma Bottalico to make it 2-1.

Lyons began the second half with a shot from outside the box, but it flew wide left. Klahowya drew a free kick a few feet outside of the box. Lyons lined up the shot and sailed it over the goal. Klahowya earned another free kick from 25 yards away after Stoner attempted to run through a pair of defenders but stumbled. But Divano’s free kick sailed wide right. Divano had another opportunity seconds later when Lyons fired a cross into the box. The ball landed at Divano’s feet in front of the goal but it missed wide right again.

The Eagles dropped several players back on defense and held strong for the final 20 minutes for the win.

When No. 16 Seton Catholic traveled to Klahowya Nov. 7, its mindset was to upset the top-ranked Eagles. But by halftime, the Cougars were hoping not to get shut out. But Klahowya did blank the Cougars 7-0 in the first round of the state playoffs.

“It was the best we have played all season,” KHS coach Troy Oelschlager said. “We have been stressing about playing the feet. We had a bad habit of kicking it and hoping our speed can catch up to it. They have responded, and that team had no chance.”

Stoner and Dickey had a couple of shots within the first minute but failed to score. Yet, the two connected a minute later when Stoner assisted Dickey for the first goal. “When we are on and have the firepower up top, they are so difficult to deal with,” Oelschlager said.

Lyons dominated Seton Catholic, tallying three assists and a goal. Her assists were to Bell and Dickey on corner kicks, and Bailey Watland on a cross. The Eagles scored on two of their four corner kick opportunities. In addition, Lyons scored when she juked a couple of defenders and fired a 35-yard shot with her left foot over the goalie’s head.

Lyons “was on point tonight,” Oelschlager said. “It was an all-around great performance by everybody, even the bench players.”

Klahowya’s sixth goal came near the end of the first half when Stoner collided with Seton Catholic’s goalie, and Emma Woodell dribbled the ball into the net.

Klahowya kept the possession and pressure alive in the second half. The Eagles held the Cougars to three shots, including one on the net from a free kick near midfield. “We held a shutout, which is important to us,” Oelschlager said.

Klahowya’s final goal arrived eight minutes into the second half when Peyton Leifeste scored in front of the net on a deflection.