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Jefferson takes down league champs
If anything, the Thomas Jefferson High School girls soccer team picked up some momentum heading into the postseason Tuesday night. The Raiders handed the league-leading Tahoma Bears their second loss in two days at Federal Way Memorial Stadium, 1-0.
The victory improved Jefferson to 8-1-4 in the South Puget Sound League North Division and left them in third place behind Tahoma (10-2-2) and Kentwood (9-1-3). The Raiders, who have already secured a berth into the postseason, played their final regular season SPSL North game Thursday against Kentlake (after press time) and could have finished in second place behind Tahoma. Jefferson needed to beat Kentlake and Kentridge to get a win over Kentwood Thursday.
The SPSL Tournament will be played Wednesday at Art Crate Field in Graham and French Field in Kent and feature the top-four teams from the North and South Divisions of the SPSL.
The schedule at Art Crate Field will include the two third-place teams playing at 6 p.m. for the leagues fifth and sixth seeds into the West Central District Tournament. The SPSL championship game will follow at 8 p.m. between Tahoma and unbeaten Beamer, the South Division champs.
At French Field, the fourth-place teams will play a loser-out game at 6 p.m. and the second-place teams will play at 8 p.m. for the third and fourth seeds. The Decatur Gators (5-4-4) have already secured fourth place in the North.
Tuesday night, Jefferson used a solid ball-control offense and a couple timely saves by goalkeeper Megan Hilby.
The only goal of the game came off the foot of Mallory Murray with 16:06 remaining in the first half.
After a long throw-in from the left sideline, nobody could gain control of the ball before Jeffersons Amy Pate sent a pass in front of the Tahoma goal to a wide-open Murray, who banged it into an open net.
The Raider defense then took over for the remainder of the game, thanks to the backline play of players like Kelsey Learned, Victoria Walsh and Amanda Brunner.
The young Federal Way Eagles (3-7-3) picked up a solid late-season win Tuesday over Decatur, 4-0. The Eagles got a pair of goals from Kendal Fieder and single goals from Alleah Pac and Kaitlyn Keyes. Eleanor Johnson picked up the shutout in goal.
The Decatur volleyball team ended their season on a good note Tuesday night with a five-game win over Federal Way, 25-22, 23-25, 25-13, 25-15, 15-11.
The Gators (2-11) got 16 kills from TC Colon, 22 digs from Whitney Iwasaki, 12 kills and three aces from Nicole Marenko, 38 assists from Mindy OMeara and 17 kills and three aces from Dee Tanielu. Federal Way (0-14) got five kills from Taylor Harris, seven kills and four blocks from Paulina McKenna, 17 assists from Trisha Paulino and eight kills and five aces from Marisa Ventura.
Jeffersons first postseason since 1990 will kick off at 1 p.m. at Bethel High School today at the SPSL Tournament. The Raiders, the fifth-place team from the North, will play Emerald Ridge, the fourth-place team from the South. Both teams finished with identical 6-8 records.
The winner of the TJ-Emerald Ridge match will play again at 5 p.m. against the loser of a match between Curtis and the No. 3 seed from the North. The Raiders are guaranteed a spot at next weekends West Central District Tournament at Kentwood High School.
Jefferson dropped their final regular season game Tuesday to Tahoma, 25-13, 25-18, 26-24. Rachelle Eckert had three aces.
Beamer (1-11) lost their season-finale Tuesday to Graham-Kapowsin, 25-20, 25-21, 26-24. Mackenzie Goff and Camille Miller had 14 kills each.
Sports editor Casey Olson: 925-5565, email@example.com