Lions top OC and LO to move up in the standings

by: MATT SHERMAN - Katie Moller tries to win a ball near the endline during West Linn's 3-0 win over Lake Oswego on Tuesday. Moller had a pair of first-half goals in the game.At the midway point through league, the Three Rivers League in girls soccer was a jumbled mess with four teams all tied at 2-2-1. Since then, the Lions have done their part to clear up the waters and have gained some separation from the rest of the field.

West Linn picked up convincing victories over Oregon City and Lake Oswego and are now firmly in second place in the TRL, trailing only Clackamas.

Last week, the Lions atoned for an earlier loss to Oregon City with an impressive 4-2 victory. While the rematch was physical again, West Linn was able to dictate the pace of play better this time around and got off to a fast start in the game.

Less than 10 minutes into the contest, Sophie Gabler drilled a deep shot into the back of the net to give her team an early boost.

The Lions were dominant in the opening 20 minutes and were the aggressors for much of the game.

Midway through the half, Juliana Guthner used her speed to cap a breakaway with a goal to make it 2-0.

However, late in the half, Oregon City cut into the lead with a deep shot that just cleared West Linn's goalie.

Still, the Lions weren't disheartened and continued their strong play after the break. The West Linn defense dug in early in the second half and withstood a charge from the Pioneers.

Midway through the half, West Linn got some breathing room with a nice goal from Lydia VanWinkle. Guthner would add another 10 minutes later as the Lions sealed the victory.

On Tuesday, the Lions took on a last-place Lake Oswego team that is still very dangerous and came away with a 3-0 win.

After taking a few minutes to get into rhythm, West Linn put together a dominating showing. The Lions had nearly all of the scoring chances in the game, getting a chip shot from Guthner that just sailed over the net and a nice free kick by Courtney Landis that was turned away by a diving save from the Lake Oswego goalie.

A nice pass from Guthner to Cailey Scott was also saved and a hard shot from Katie Moller was nearly muffed before the Laker keeper hauled it in.

The relentless pressure paid off with 5:48 to play in the first half when a nice feed from VanWinkle to Moller led to the game's first goal.

Just a minute and a half later, Guthner outran the Lake Oswego defense on a breakaway and scored easily to quickly make it 2-0.

The Lions were never significantly threatened in the second half and moved to 4-2-2 in league. West Linn still trails Clackamas by four points for first place but plays the Cavs once more in the regular season.

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