Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Weekly Braves' sports capsule Nov. 9, 2011

Photo by Karla Reynolds

Photo by Amylynn Richards

 Photo by Karla Reynolds

 Photo by Ed Baker

Girls’ Soccer to play in state tourney
By M. Sharon Baker
The La Conner girls’ soccer team advanced to the 1B/2B State Tournament, despite two losses in the Bi-District tournament.
The Braves lost 1-0 to Bear Creek Thursday, Nov. 3 and then lost 3-2 Saturday, Nov. 5 to Seattle Lutheran.
As the fourth place finisher in the 2B Bi-District tournament, the Braves will travel to Brewster Saturday, Nov. 12 for the first round of the state tournament.
On Thursday, the Braves lacked the offensive punch they needed to beat Bear Creek in a hard-fought match, putting just four shots on goal for the entire game. The Bear Creek game “was a classic first game on turf and a learning experience,” said Coach Amy Freeto.
Up until the Nov. 3 game, La Conner played all of its games on grass. “To me, the game showed we needed to make some adjustments,” Freeto said. “The girls didn’t go to the ball. They were intimidated, and Bear Creek pushed us around a bit.”
The lone goal came with just 2 minutes left in the game after the La Conner defense failed to clear a Bear Creek throw in and left Bear Creek senior captain and Crossfire select player Morgan Rial wide open on the 18-yard line.
The first bi-district tournament loss sent the Braves to the third place playoff game against Seattle Lutheran, which they lost 3-2 in overtime.
The Braves played the game without starting goalkeeper Tessa Bruland, who injured her hand just minutes before the game, when a teammate accidentally slammed Bruland’s hand in the restroom door, Freeto said.
The team’s backup goalie, Lauren Reynolds, had played just one-half of one game going into the Seattle Lutheran match.
“The way we looked at it was either way, win or lose, we were going to state,” said Freeto. “Once they scored the first goal, we decided to get our 12, 13 and 14th players some playing time on turf.”
The Braves’ freshman forward Kate Baker tied the game 1-1  in the first half on a pass from junior Kelsey Crawford, but Seattle Lutheran put a second goal on the board after a direct kick that slipped through Reynolds’ legs.
The Braves’ dominated the second half but didn’t score until Baker found the net again from a pass from freshman Isis Gamble with just 5 minutes left, tying the game 2-2 and sending it into overtime. Seattle Lutheran needed just 2 minutes into the first overtime to find the net, giving them the 3-2 win.
The Braves now take what is believed to be an easier route to the state championship match, traveling east of the mountains to play Brewster this Saturday.

 Champ Volleyball team - Photo by Amylynn Richards
... from Braves Raves
By Amylynn Richards
The Washington Interscholastic Athletic Association announced finalized times, dates, and locations for soccer and football playoffs on Monday, Nov. 7. 
Check the La Conner Weekly News Facebook page,, or WIAA websites for potential schedule changes before heading out of town.
It’s possible to hit each of the four playoff games the Braves are competing in this weekend. The volleyball team plays its first match against Colfax at 1:30 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 11 at the Yakima Sun Dome and hopes to remain until the championship game at 7 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 12. 
The boys’ soccer team begins play at 11 a.m. at the Everett Memorial Stadium against Providence Classical Christian. The winner will play either Tacoma Baptist or Bear Creek on Friday, Nov. 18, time and place to be determined.
The girls’ soccer team plays Brewster on Saturday, Nov. 12 at 1 p.m.  If the Lady Braves win, they will play the winner of the Napavine vs. Warden game at the Sumner Chevrolet Stadium on Friday, Nov. 18. The time has yet to be announced.
Football plays a pigtail playoff game against Morton/White Pass on Saturday, Nov. 12 at 2 p.m. at the Everett Memorial Stadium.  If they win, they will play the winner of the Adna vs. La Salle game the following Saturday.
The girls played three matches on their journey to earning the bi-district championship: Evergreen Lutheran in three (25-5, 25-5, 25-9); Orcas Island in three 25-14, 25-10, 25-12); and a rough but ultimately victorious win against Bear Creek in four (25-22, 28-26, 14-25, 25-17) (SCORE IS CQ)
“What a great day,” reports Coach Suzanne Marble. “I am super proud of my girls.”  This marks the seventh consecutive bi-district championship and the 17th consecutive trips to compete at the state championships.
Team championship highlights: Kelley McClung had 98 assists and 8 aces; Emily Anderson had 8 aces and 36 kills; Priscilla Ponce-Venegas had 14 aces and 21 kills; Emma Christianson had 9 aces and 41 digs; and Carly Anderson had 35 digs.
“Katie Novak was a spark for us off the bench today,” Coach Marble said. “Katie McKnight had a huge day for us and really played well; she was crucial to our win against Bear Creek.”
The Braves won their final home game 28-7 against the Orcas Island Vikings on Thursday, Nov. 3. Fans and Braves teammates were outraged when a Viking assaulted a Brave after a tackle — and was not ejected from the game.  When Coach Johnny Lee asked at that time for a review, the referee said, “I’ll look into it later,” and the game continued.  “I asked for an explanation from the officials, and they told me I had to call a time out in order to talk things over... However, the silver lining to that whole situation was the way our boys responded. They did their talking with their pads and their play on the field,” Lee said. “It shows that they’ve grown up, matured, and have been able to handle themselves in situations of adversity. I was incredibly proud of them for their actions.”
The Brave touchdowns were scored by: Sean Hulbert, 29yrd reception and 10yrd run; Dahlton Zavala, 3yrd run; and Skylar Krueger, 3yrd run.
Coach Lee was particularly proud of the defense. When interviewed on Friday, he said that “they stepped up big last night and played with tremendous effort. They made a huge goal line stand late in the game to give us momentum.”  Lee also said that the Braves forced some turnovers, which “definitely helped our confidence in stopping the pass. Bottom line is that the guys held one of the best offenses in the league to 7 points, so there is certain satisfaction in that.”
Football, pep band and cheer squad seniors were honored at the final home game of the season on Thursday, Nov. 3: Keith Aske; Jared Fohn; Landy James; Matt McCauley; Nathan Parker; Bobby Poulton; Cameron Wischhusen; Diane Quintasket; Grace Takehara; Kristin Dorr; Kaylee Dykes;  Sara Peterson and Martin Sampson.
The girls played Bear Creek on Thursday, Nov. 3. The Cubs won 1-0.  There weren’t a lot of shots taken by either team this game,” Coach Amy Freeto said. “We had four shots, they had seven. Unfortunately, they scored in the last 2 minutes of the game.”
Freeto is full of praise for her athletes, particularly sophomore goal keeper Tessa Bruland.  “Tessa made possibly her best save of the season in the last 10 minutes,” Freeto said. “The other team had a dangerous shot on goal, and Tessa came out of nowhere, springing up to the corner of the goal to tip the ball to the side, It was amazing! Unfortunately, we left a shooter open in front of the goal later on, and they scored.”
The girls played on turf, which was a new experience for many of the girls. “It was a rough and tumble game, lots of fouls…all in all a decent game and has no real bearing on the rest of the season.” The girls played Seattle Lutheran on Saturday, Nov. 5 in the first round of play-offs. Seattle Lutheran won 3-2. 
The boys went into the playoffs to play last year’s champion Providence Classical Christian with “personnel issues,” as Coach Steve DeLeon called it; some of the boys were out due to illness or ineligibility.  DeLeon says that the 5-1 loss to Providence Classical Christian “does not quite reflect the game” due to regular players not taking to the field that day.
DeLeon made a point to celebrate Tyler Howlett, who DeLeon said is “normally a baseball and basketball player,” because Howlett made his first game goal — and the only Brave goal — against the toughest team in the State.  “He’s done it in practice, so it was nice to see him get a goal in a game.”
Coach DeLeon also commends Jamall James and Spencer Finley, who “put in great shifts upfront and in defense respectively.”   DeLeon continued, “This past Saturday was a tough game. We’re still working on a few things, and hopefully it will all come together. We are faced with the same task as last year; we have to knock off last year’s state champions in order to go on to Sumner. It’s a large task, but something that we know is possible — we did it last year!”
Eastern Washington junior and La Conner High School graduate Cora Kellerman was named “Big Sky Conference Volleyball Player of the Week” last week for the second time this season, according to a press release by the athletic conference. The Big Sky Conference includes the Eastern Washington University Eagles.
Kellerman set a new personal career record high with 25 kills across two matches, averaging 4.89 per set  and was credited  with having “led the Eagles to wins against Montana and Montana State,” putting the Eagles in third place in that division.
She pulled off 28 digs, averaging 3.11 digs a set, and had four total blocks. In all, she scored 46 points for the Eagles in the combined two matches, 18 full points ahead of the athlete who scored the second most points collectively. To top it off, Kellerman served 63 swings with just four errors.
The following evening in a match against Montana State, Kellerman racked up 19 kills, 17 digs, 4 blocks, and only 2 errors out of 36 swings — her career best (.472 attack percentage).

No comments:

Post a Comment