Sonoma soccer girls shine, nip rival Analy, win Arcata Tourney
Host Monty today, Dragon boys host SCL opener Friday
Senior all-league standout Annie Studdert (left) heads the ball during the Lady Dragons’ recent nonleague loss to powerful Maria Carrillo at the high school field.
After the long ride north to Humboldt County, the Sonoma Valley High School varsity soccer girls competed in the annual Eye of the Tiger Tournament in Arcata and made the Labor Day weekend both a familiar, and memorable, one.
Playing solid, shutdown defense and steady, counter-attacking offense, the Lady Dragons posted three shutout wins – beating Arcata 1-0, Fortuna 3-0 and Eureka 5-0 – to reach the holiday tourney’s title match on Saturday, when they faced defending champion and longtime Sonoma County League rival Analy.
Last year, the Tiger girls denied Sonoma its fifth-straight Eye of the Tiger title. But this year it was a different, but familiar, story.
The Lady Dragons took a 1-0 first-half lead, only to be tied 1-1 by Analy in the second half, which eventually ended up the final score and forced a penalty shootout, which Sonoma won 4-3 to capture the tournament championship.
Sonoma’s varsity soccer girls and Arcata Tourney champion – under the direction of first-year head coach Julio Leon and assistant coach Martha Ceja – consist of seniors Annie Studdert, Selena Caruso, Emily Wilber, Maddie Goertzen, Thalia Becerril, Cecilia Corona, Cassidy Hamilton and Danika Hedley; juniors Riley Ellis-Reis, Ashley Vail, Caroline Knef, Halli Dobson, Lindsey Jasperse and Naomi Blinman; sophomores Maria Hawing, Ellen Angeloni, Brena Hamilton, Kirsten Hodgson and Megan Neely; and freshman Monica Ramirez.
Along with their smothering tournament-long defense, the Lady Dragons were also led to the Eye of the Tiger title by Caruso’s three goals and three assists; Corona’s two goals and one assist; Studdert’s and Knef’s goal and assist each; a goal apiece by Angeloni, Dobson and Cassidy Hamilton; and an assist each from Vail, Goertzen and Brena Hamilton.
The Lady Dragons host nonleague Montgomery at 4 p.m. today at the high school field before starting their Sonoma County League season with a rematch with Analy this Thursday night, Sept. 8, in Sebastopol.
Sonoma’s varsity soccer boys open their season hosting fellow SCL co-champion Analy this Friday, Sept. 9, at 4 p.m. on the high school field.