Meadowdale wins in district playoff opener


Herald Writer

EDMONDS – The Meadowdale Mavericks showed why they are the Western Conference 3A girls soccer champs, as they defeated Bellingham 2-0 Saturday night in the first round of the Northwest District tournament at Edmonds Stadium.

The game was a defensive struggle throughout. The score was 0-0 at halftime with only six combined shots on goal for the two teams.

Meadowdale’s Kelsey Larson struck first in the 61st minute with a goal in the right corner.

Goalie Allie Wirtala also led the way, recording her sixth shutout of the season. Meadowdale’s defense was the biggest difference in the game, allowing only three shots on goal.

Meadowdale sophomore midfielder Kristina Hughes was the glue in the Mavericks’ sticky defense. Every time Bellingham would make a move towards Meadowdale’s goal, there stood Hughes with big stop after big stop.

Bellingham (9-9-1) could not muster any offensive opportunities for themselves as they reached Meadowdale’s side of the field only nine times.

“Meadowdale is a great team with a lot of capable players. They are the best all-around team we’ve faced all year,” Red Raiders coach Mark Wright said.

With Meadowdale (11-3-3) holding a slim 1-0 lead late in the second half, the Mavericks kept the pressure on Bellingham and kept the ball on the Red Raiders’ side of the field. It finally paid off as Meadowdale’s Lora Reed put the game away with a late goal in the 79th minute.

“Our girls played a very good game and I made sure to keep them fresh so we could move on in the tournament,” Meadowdale coach Michael Bartley said. He made key substitutions throughout the game.

Meadowdale will face Squalicum, 5 p.m. Tuesday at Mount Vernon High School, in one Northwest District semifinal matchup for the right to play for the Northwest District championship.

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