By Rockne Roll • Multimedia Journalist • 

Grizzlies rout Generals in opener

Rockne Roll/News-Register ##
Jonah Crown (17) plays off a ball near midfield in the Grizzlies season opener at Grant high School in Portland against the Generals on Thursday. Crown s 49th minute tally helped propel McMinnville to a 3-1 victory.
Rockne Roll/News-Register ## Jonah Crown (17) plays off a ball near midfield in the Grizzlies season opener at Grant high School in Portland against the Generals on Thursday. Crown's 49th minute tally helped propel McMinnville to a 3-1 victory.

PORTLAND – It’s rare that a team’s biggest game of the season is also its first, but that’s the position that McMinnville boys soccer found itself in at Grant High School on Thursday when the Grizzlies faced the Generals in their opener.

McMinnville rose to the occasion and avenged last year’s loss to the Generals with a stunning 3-1 victory over last year’s Class 6A state runner-up.

After a scoreless first half that saw the Grizzlies command the pitch and bend (but not break) Grant’s defense, Jonah Crown broke through in the 49th minute with a left-footed laser that was struck so hard it lodged in the top of the net. A defensive lapse let Grant net the equalizer, but the Grizzlies pressed again, and Jose Bautista opened his account with a far post header off a corner kick in the 76th minute.

Alex Martinez piled on another goal in stoppage time when, after getting pressured on a stall play, Carlos Lucas launched a pinpoint cross to the top of the box, where Martinez was unmarked.

McMinnville (1-0) faces another 2014 state tournament qualifier in Westview, seeded No. 4 in last year’s bracket, Tuesday night at Wortman Stadium. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.

Check out Tuesday's News-Register for more details.

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