Blanchet’s Diego Leon-Patino (14) and Lakeview’s Raul Lopez (7) race for the ball during the Lakeview vs. Blanchet first round state championships boy’s soccer game at Blanchet Cathloic School in Salem on Wednesday, Nov. 5, 2014. Blanchet won the game 3-1.
The Cavaliers are showing their experience.
Blanchet Catholic School’s boys soccer team was tied 1-1 with Lakeview Wednesday afternoon for much of their first round match of the OSAA Class 3A/2A/1A state playoffs.
A lesser team that hadn’t been in the situation before might have folded.
Instead, the Cavaliers kept pushing and when junior Cristobal Ramos-Torres capitalized by putting in a crossing pass after an outstanding effort and centering pass by Kengo Tsuyyki, it gave Blanchet the push it needed for a 3-1 win.
“We were just playing harder than the other team at the end,” said Blanchet senior goalkeeper Joe Whitnah. “Both teams were tied, but we just stepped up and did what we had to do.”
No. 6 seed Blanchet (12-2-3) advances to the quarterfinal round for the second year in a row and will play at No. 3 seed Catlin Gabel Saturday.
“I feel like we have a chance, like a better chance than last year,” said senior midfielder Edwin Solis, who put home an insurance free kick goal with five seconds left.
“Now we’re moving the ball more around, talking. At least we’re doing it more and we have to look for those wide through balls and look to get those crosses in.”
Blanchet came out strong and Diego Leon-Patino worked the ball to the middle of the field then passed it to a wide open Lucas Muller, who capitalized for a 1-0 lead six minutes in.
But with just under three minutes left in the first half the Cavaliers were showing signs of fatigue and Lakeview capitalized as Cody Hamilton put in the equalizer.
“In the first half we were winning the goal kicks, the throw ins and everything, and that was fueling everything and made everything easier,” Blanchet coach Robin Smith said.
“Well, the second we didn’t start winning those 50-50 balls it made everything harder, and then we didn’t realize that until the last 10 minutes when we started to do it again. We got opportunity after opportunity and if you get enough opportunities you’re going to capitalize on them.”
The Cavaliers’ challenge now is to continue that momentum.
The team has learned what it’s like to play deep into the playoffs last year, and can learn a lot from Wednesday’s win.
“We start off with a good intensity,” said senior forward Matthew Beskow. “That’s what makes us work and move to get open. Later in the games we need to work on keeping that intensity because we just stay lackadaisical, and that happens for other teams to get back into the game.”
bpoehler@StatesmanJournal.com, (503) 399-6701 or follow at twitter.com/bpoehler
Blanchet 3, Lakeview 1
BLA- Muller (Leon-Patino) 6:00; LAK- Hamilton 37:00; BLA- Ramos-Torres (Tsuyuki) 68:00; BLA- Solis (FK) 80:00.