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North Marion soccer blanks Newport at home 6-0
By Elias Esquivel,
In a conference matchup between two of the top-10 ranked soccer teams in the state, North Marion found its groove early and pulled away to win comfortably against Newport 6-0 at home on Thursday, Sept. 21.
The victory swiftly leapt the Huskies a couple spots in the OSAA rankings, as they currently sit at No. 5 after entering the match ranked seventh.
“I just thought our game plan went well,” North Marion head coach Ben Bonser said. “We switched to a new system and we’re able to just put a lot of numbers up into the box — into the final third — and we’re able to create opportunities that way. When we look for that assisted goal, that’s when we’re able to finish. It helped us against Gladstone. It helped us today; all our goals were assisted except for the (penalty kick), obviously.”
Senior Caile Lader led the Huskies with two goals and two assists. Junior Eva Coulombe, Anahi Medina and Paige Comerford added a goal as well, while Fia Swanson rounded out the production with a goal of her own and an assist.
“We’re doing a really good job at coming together as a team and using the midfield,” Lader said. "Especially Yesenia (Delgado) and (Comerford) and Vanessa Valenzuela in the mids and switching it — that’s really important. I feel like we just came out and played our game, and dominated and that should be how the season should go for us.”
Coulombe’s score came in the 12th minute off a cross from Lader. Six minutes later, Comerford chipped in her goal off a perfectly placed corner by Swanson.
At the half, North Marion led the shot count 15-2.
Lader’s first score of the game came in the 52nd minute on a penalty kick after a handball against Newport. The final three goals were scored in the last 15 minutes, with Medina’s occurring in the final minute.
North Marion overwhelmingly commanded possession throughout the match and finished with the shot count at 29-8. The Huskies' new formation, a 3-4-3, contributed to the disparity. Bonser said the move from a 4-4-2 diamond formation to a new one was an “aggressive change” but that the Huskies' personnel and depth allowed its implementation.
“That system is really rough on your wingbacks because they’re getting all the way in the attack, and then coming all the way back and playing defense on the outside,” Bonser said. “Callie Cutsforth joined us as a freshman this year and she’s just got endless energy up and down the field ... she doesn’t need to come off. We’ll give her a break here and there, but it’s not needed. And then Domnikka Lyon’s on the other side is able to do that for stretches, and we’ve got players that can come in and fill for her when she needs a breather.”
North Marion (3-2, 1-0 OWC) now prepares for a road conference matchup against Stayton (1-4, 0-0 OWC) on Tuesday, Sept. 26.