It took 13 minutes for the Kennewick girls soccer team to score on Monday at Lampson Stadium, but once the flood gates opened, they never closed as the Lions rolled to an 11-0 victory over Rogers in the opening round of the MCC-GSL bi-district tournament.
Klarissa Barajas and Kirren Gay each netted a pair of first-half goals, and freshman Trininity Demand scored a hat trick in the second half for Kennewick (2-13), which advances to another loser-out game at North Central at 5 p.m. Wednesday.
Barajas, a senior forward, opened the scoring when she won a 50-50 ball just outside the penalty box and hit a shot across the face of Rogers goalkeeper Abigail Harmison to find the back of the net. In the next 12 minutes, Barajas would net her second goal and also hit a nifty back-heel pass to Gay for her first score.
“She played like she can play; she’s got some great skills,” Kennewick coach Jamie Walter said of Barajas. “I think she was just a little bit held back by herself this season, but today she really stepped up and started us off with a couple goals that lifted everybody up.”
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Barajas rotated to central defender for a spell after halftime, but it didn’t stop the Kennewick onslaught as the team still scored three goals in the first 10 minutes of the second half to make it 8-0. Walter said the position change came because of a deal she made with one of her defenders.
“Our central defender, Reilyn (Davis), has just been rock solid all year. She has saved us — actually our whole defensive line has. Without them, we would have been in double digits (goals allowed) against some of these teams,” Walter said. “So she’s really been wanting to play forward, and yesterday I told her — thinking that we probably wouldn’t — but I said, ‘If we get five goals, then we’ll move you up to forward.’ ”
And Davis took advantage of the opportunity, powering home a penalty kick in the 45th inside the left post, after receiving a note from her coach to “keep it simple.”
Demand scored in the 50th and 72nd minute, and netted her final goal in the 74th when she received a long through pass and finished with her right foot to score the Lions’ 11th of the match.
“She’s a freshman, but I actually expected a lot out of her this season as far as goals because she’s got a great turn-and-fire, and it’s got a lot of power,” Walter said. “She hasn’t really been able to come through, but sometimes you get that first goal and it gives you confidence.”
Kennewick failed to win a league game this season, but that was hard to tell in a rout of the winless Pirates (0-13, 0-9). The Lions — who scored just one goal in their final five conference games — had all aspects of their game working, as they scored on set pieces, penalty kicks, long balls and shots set up by good passing inside. They even got some big-time saves from Olivia Blank to preserve the clean sheet.
For a young team like Kennewick, which has struggled to compete against the stellar talent in the MCC, Walter is hopeful that the first win since the season opener — an 8-0 victory over Eisenhower — will get the Lions back on track and inspire them to extend their season on Wednesday.
“Even though we haven’t won all season, we’re a good team. We just haven’t come together,” Walter said. “So maybe today’s win brought them together more, and hopefully on Wednesday we can carry that on.”
Scoring: K, Trinity Demand 3G; Klarissa Barajas 2G, A; Kirren Gay 2G; Reilyn Davis G; Zoe Briones G; Sydney Cook G; Delaney Bills G; Andrea Martell A; Maya Thornton A. Saves: K, Olivia Blank 3.
▪ Walla Walla defeated Pasco 2-1 at Edgar Brown Stadium to advance to the double-elimination round of the Class 4A regional tournament. The Blue Devils (4-11) will face Mead at 6 p.m. Wednesday at Joe Albi Stadium.