The Kamiakin High School girls soccer team had faced hardly any adversity this postseason, outscoring its opponents by a combined 22-1 over four district and state games.
But the Braves needed overtime, and a marvelous late goal in the second extra period by Britney Donais — assisted by Aaliyah Valladeras — to get past Lakeside of Seattle 2-1 on Saturday at Lampson Stadium to advance to the Class 3A state championship weekend for the first time since 2013.
“I really don’t make a lot of game-winning goals, so I’m not even sure how to feel after that,” said Donais, a junior forward. “I’m pretty excited about getting to play next weekend, in my career we haven’t done it. It’s nice to get two more games, hopefully we’re able to stay undefeated.”
Kamiakin (19-0) will face either Mercer Island or Edmonds-Woodway — played later Saturday — on Friday at Puyallup’s Sparks Stadium in the state semifinals.
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“Since it’s my senior year, this is the greatest feeling,” said Valladeras, who had a goal in regulation to go along wither her game-winning assist. “Before the season, I made a promise that I was going to give it my all to get to this point. The whole team made that promise, and it’s so great to see it pay off like this.”
After a scoreless first half, Kamiakin struck gold in the 48th minute when Bela Nicacio found Valladares’s forehead with a cross, and Valladeras headed a perfect shot into the top-left corner that beat Lakeside’s freshman keeper Ashlyn Ryan. That seemed like it would be the game winner, as it stood with less than 2 minutes to play, until Lakeside’s Josie Barton lobbed a high shot over the outstretched hand of Grace Wilbur for a 1-all tie that forced overtime.
“I don’t know if it was the jitters or what, but they were just a little off the whole game,” Kamiakin coach Chris Erikson said. “They were still playing OK, but not really what they’re capable of. But that’s OK, that was a good team, and that’s what playoffs are about is stepping up.”
The Lions (12-6-2) earned a penalty kick in the first OT period when Laurel Ovenell was fouled just inside the box, but the sophomore midfielder hit the crossbar with the try.
Then, on the final play of the game, Valladeras hit a deep ball that Donais coralled at the top of the box, turned, and fired into the bottom left corner for the winner.
“Britney’s finish was awesome,” Erikson said.
It was the third goal for Donais in the Braves’ two state playoff games — beat Mountain View 4-1 on Tuesday — after she scored just five times in the regular season.
Half: 0-0. Scoring: L, Josie Barton G. K, Aaliyah Valladares G, A; Britney Donais G; Bela Nicacio A.