Sports

Local girls help Rush capture national title

Members of the Washington Rush U18, back row from left, coach Ben Somoza, Sofia Vargas, Tasha Pabisz, Makaela Nellams, Breonna Countryman, Miranda Head, Becca Lentz, Stephanie Conrad, Kris Nelson and assistant coach Guillermo Somoza. Front row from left, Lauren Luke, Taylor Hauck, Kelly Gould, Cara Wegner, C.J. Shaver, Sadie Hitsky, Ashley Saracino and Lindsay Licht.   - Courtesy Photo
Members of the Washington Rush U18, back row from left, coach Ben Somoza, Sofia Vargas, Tasha Pabisz, Makaela Nellams, Breonna Countryman, Miranda Head, Becca Lentz, Stephanie Conrad, Kris Nelson and assistant coach Guillermo Somoza. Front row from left, Lauren Luke, Taylor Hauck, Kelly Gould, Cara Wegner, C.J. Shaver, Sadie Hitsky, Ashley Saracino and Lindsay Licht.
— image credit: Courtesy Photo

ARLINGTON — Lakewood High School student and goalkeeper Miranda Head fought off a barrage of shots to help the Washington Rush girls U18 select soccer team defeat Eugene Metro FC, 4-0, and capture the US Club National Cup Championship Monday, Aug. 1, in Boise, Idaho.

Rush is made up of players from local high schools, including Arlington, Marysville-Pilchuck, Jackson, Kamiak, Lake Stevens and Archbishop Murphy. Sadie Hitsky and Becca Lentz attend Arlington and Marysville-Pilchuck respectively.

Jackson’s Cara Wegner netted two goals and teammates Kelly Gould of Archbishop Murphy and Makaela Nellams of Everett each scored a goal.

Rush has won seven consecutive tournaments and finished the season 17-2-2.

“It was a challenge in 100-degree weather,” Rush coach Ben Somoza said about the final day of the tournament. “The halves are 45 minutes long, so there was a strong fatigue factor.”

The Rush defense gave up just one goal in three games en route to the championship game thanks in part to Head’s strong play in the net. The team’s stingy play comes as no surprise considering it has only surrendered 14 goals in 21 games played. Rush kicked off its season in May.

“Miranda has been the lone goalkeeper for the Rush since the team began and she is a key reason for the team’s success,” Somoza said.

Rush reached the finals by defeating Rochester FC, 6-0, Platinum FC, 2-1, and Storm FC, 1-0. The team’s losses this summer came in a 1-0 loss to Portland ‘93 Navy on May 16, and a 3-1 loss to OSSA Blue nearly a month later. It finished the season winning 13 straight games.

The U.S. Club National Cup, which had more than 100 teams competing, is one of just two national tournaments for players ages 12-17.

Nearly half of the team’s players have already committed to either a D1 or D2 school to play soccer.

 

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