Indians move on to playoffs after blowout play-in game

At the beginning of the season, Coach Jim Seward said his goal was to play beautiful soccer. That’s just what the Indians did on Thursday against the Coquille/Myrtle Point Red Devils in the game that would send one of them on to playoffs and the other off the field for the season.

by: CORY MIMMS - Chase Rome's goal off a perfect corner kick from Leilani Lopes.

Less than three minutes into the game, Audrey Bever attacked the goal and popped the ball into the back of the net. From there on, the Indians controlled the ball most of the game, keeping it in Devil territory.

By halftime, Molalla had a 7-0 lead, and Seward had begun rotating players through different positions.

Across the board, the team played excellent soccer, with their passing game on point and their attacks aggressive and calculated.

Alisha Larsen, Desirae Desrosiers and Josie Child picked up one goal each. Audrey Bever got two, and Chase Rome fueled the scoring, getting four of the team’s nine goals.

In the fifth minute, Rome sent the ball flying from outside the 18-yard box. It bounced off the rail and in.

Less than two minutes later, Child followed up with her goal.

Leilani Lopes, an aggressive player who has slammed through opposing defenders all season, was also on her game. Rome’s second goal was off a header, made possible by a perfectly placed corner kick from Lopes.

By halftime, the score was 7-0. In the second half, Seward put Bianca Delgado in as goal keeper and moved the rest of the players out of their typical positions. This creates more-rounded players, who better understand every position on the field.

Rotating players also curbs the score in shutout games. The Indians could have taken a 12-0 or 14-0 victory in this game, but part of the goal of prep sports is to build good sportsmanship. Molalla’s win in this game, and with it their place in playoffs, was secured in the first half. So in the second half Seward shifted gears.

This season was a building season for the Indians, Seward said, as it was his first year as head coach. The backline and midfield was strong from the beginning, he said, but they were weak on the attack.

Throughout the season, the Indians have been focusing on building their attack, and it’s paid off with a spot in playoffs.

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