Lady Hawks end regular season with upset of Pullman
Cheney gets road rematch with Greyhounds in first round of playoffs
Cheney's Ashlyn Martin (9) receives congratulations from Sarah Fix (10) and other players as she leaves the game in the regular season finale Thursday against Pullman. The Lady Hawks lone senior tore her ACL in the opener with Rogers, but was able to get a touch on the ball to open Thursday's game on Senior Day.
With three of their final four games at home, Cheney girls soccer coach Nils Radtke had hoped his team would use this to post a few final wins before the postseason.
Instead they dropped three of their last four, but if they were only to get that one win, Radtke would rather it be against their season-finale opponent – Pullman. The Lady Hawks were out shot 6-3 by the visiting Greyhounds, but made the best of those shots by putting two into the net to down their upcoming first-round opponent 2-1 on Senior Day.
The first time the two teams met Oct. 1 the Lady Hawks owned a 1-0 lead through the first 60 minutes, then fell apart somewhat, eventually losing 2-1 in overtime at Pullman. Radtke said this time they weren't going to let that happen.
"This game, our saying was 'All in for 80,' and they were," he said.
Pullman's Diane DeWald scored the game's first goal in the 25th minute on a shot from right of goal about 10 yards out. The Lady Hawks responded three minutes later as Jasmine McCauley possessed a ball and floated in a goal from almost 40 yards out tying the game.
In the 56th minute, Sarah Fix won a ball in the middle, and after a few touches, sent a long ball to Kendyl Cone outside. Cone worked the ball in closer to goal and crossed a pass to Abby Hammermeister, who sent the eventual game winner into the Pullman net from about seven yards out.
"Both goals came from things we worked on in practice," Radtke said.
Interestingly, Radtke was also happy with the fact his team received more foul calls than Pullman; something he said was a sign of the Lady Hawks being more aggressive.
"Nothing dirty, just hard tackles," he said.
The Pullman win was a good way for Cheney to rebound from a disappointing 3-0 loss to Clarkston. Cheney played the Bantams evenly until the 55th minute when Leah Edens scored a solo goal to put Clarkston up 1-0.
Radtke said the Lady Hawks kind of let down after that, with Brooke Morrow scoring in the 60th minute and then assisting Edens on her second goal in the 74th minute.
Cheney finishes the regular season in fifth place, 5-10 overall, 4-8 Great Northern League, and opens postseason play today (Thursday) in a loser-out game at fourth-place Pullman (6-6, 7-6). Radtke is pleased they get a quick rematch with Pullman, preferring playing what he believes is a good team rather than making the road trip to third-place Clarkston. He feels the Lady Hawks might have some confidence along with a little fire they can take down south.
"I'm excited for what we'll do," he said.
John McCallum can be reached at email@example.com.