A shot at redemption awaits Crescent Valley High.
On a cool summer evening in late August, the Raiders traveled to Milwaukie for their season-opening girls soccer match against La Salle.
Cali McClave scored in the 60th minute to tie it at 1-all, but a breakaway goal by freshman Jacqueline Blakeley put the Falcons up for good in the 71st. La Salle held on to win the match, 2-1.
Fourth-seeded CV (12-1-3), which hasn’t lost since, will get another chance to slay the Falcons at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday in the 5A state semifinals. Top-seeded La Salle (13-1-2) will again have home field advantage.
“They have all the pieces and they are a very good team. We certainly have our hands full and we are going to have to play well,” CV coach Blake Leamy said of the Falcons. “The good news is we are playing very well. We have a lot of respect for them, but I think the biggest thing is we are confident in how we are playing.
“This is one of those moments in life where you don’t get a lot of these chances. We have grown up a lot this last year and a half and we are excited about the opportunity.”
La Salle finished second in the Northwest Oregon Conference behind Sandy, which defeated the Falcons 1-0 at home last month. CV was the runner-up to Corvallis in the Mid-Willamette Conference.
The Raiders routed fifth-seeded Sandy 3-0 in the quarterfinals and blanked No. 13 Wilsonville 2-0 in the round of 16. Both matches were played at Corvallis High's Spartan Stadium.
The Falcons needed penalty kicks to get by ninth-seeded Hillsboro in Saturday’s quarterfinals. The match was tied at 1-all after regulation and overtime.
“We respect everybody we play, and we also feel like we are peaking at the right time,” Leamy said. “We just beat Sandy 3-0 so we’ve got it in us, it’s just whether we can manage the emotion of the game and whether we are willing to battle, because we are going to have to battle. We have to manage the occasion, and the last two games we have done that.”
No. 11 Silverton and No. 2 Summit are playing in Tuesday’s other semifinal. The Storm have won the last four state titles.
Blakeley scored both La Salle goals in the first meeting. The physical forward was a participant in January’s U.S. Olympic Development Program in Phoenix.
“We are definitely going to pay attention to her,” Leamy said. “They knock the ball around well and don’t play too many balls over the top, so we may play zone or we may play partial zone and partial man. We will definitely pay a little more attention to her than we did last game. She looks like a senior but she’s a freshman. We are going to get her marked up and taken care of, but we also have a few other weapons we have to worry about.”
Other than Blakeley’s goals, the first meeting was essentially even.
The teams had a similar number of shots and neither side dominated possession.
“They are very big, pretty fast, well-coached and they do a lot of really good things,” Leamy said. “I think it’s going to be a close game, one of those games where a mistake or two could decide it. Hopefully somebody can create a little magic, and we have a lot of game-winning players. We don’t have just one player who scores.”