By Rockne Roll • Multimedia Journalist • 

Dayton, Western Mennonite girls headed for state

SALEM – Girls soccer clubs from both Dayton and Western Mennonite punched their tickets to the state tournament Thursday night at Salem Academy in the 3A/2A/1A Special District 3 playoffs.

The Pirates took the Amity Warriors to task in a 3-0 victory in the elimination match that got Dayton the third seed out of SD3 into the tournament. The Pirates dominated possession from start to finish, ripping shot after shot before April Anguiano broke through to find the nylon in the 20th minute.

The Amity defense stood firm against the Pirates onslaught, though, and held them almost an hour without another goal before defender Kayliie Holland broke through in the middle of the field and drove uncontested through the field and right up to Amity’s doorstep, where she deposited her second goal of the season in the 76th minute. Elizabeth Meaders tacked on another in the 79th.

The Pirates will start OSAA bracket play next week. Location, time, and opponent for their first match will be determined when the rankings are finalized on Saturday night.

Blanchet Catholic 3, Western Mennonite 1

The Lady Pioneers did not fare as well in their seeding match against Blanchet Catholic.

While Melissa Papulski opened the scoring with a 14th minute tally to put Western on top, an injury to Cheyenne Locke just minutes later deprived the Lady Pios of one of their captains and a key component of their midfield.

Blanchet quickly capitalized, scoring in the 25th minute, then looping a free kick from deep in the right corner onto the back post to grab a lead in the 48th. A third goal for the Cavaliers came in the 69th minute to nail down the top seed from SD3 into the state tournament.

Western’s loss stuck them with the district’s No. 2 seed in the bracket. They’ll start tournament play next week; Location, opponent and time are all to be determined after the final rankings are set Saturday.

Byerly named SD3 Player of the Year

Dayton midfielder Shelby Byerly went home from Salem with a little extra hardware as she was named Player of the Year for SD3. Her Dayton teammates Vanessa and Elizabeth Ramirez, as well as Western Mennonite’s Locke, Madison Hull and Emma Gibb, all received first team all-district honors.

Three players each from Dayton and Western received second team honors and three Lady Pioneers, two Pirates and two Amity Warriors received honorable mentions.