Despite state loss, rookie MG girls soccer coach proud of season (slide show)

MARYSVILLE – After riding a high since winning the Northwest 3A District Championship Saturday, Marysville Getchell’s girls soccer team was brought back down to earth at home Tuesday in the first round of the state playoffs, losing 2-0 to Mountain View of Vancouver, WA.

“Oh, my gosh, that was incredible,” first-year coach Sarah Hereth said Wednesday about Saturday’s 2-0 win over Ferndale. “It’s the first district title Getchell has. That achievement is enormous.”

Hereth said while heart-broken about Tuesday’s loss, “Yesterday does not negate everything we’ve achieved the last three months.”

After going to state two years ago, the team had a losing record last year. So she’s proud of their effort of bouncing back this season.

Hereth, who is student teaching, said she tried to make it fun for the girls. She played just a few years ago at Granite Falls High School and gave up the sport because she was “burnt out.”

“When you play year-round you either fall more in love with it or it feels like a job,” she said. “I want them to still think it’s fun.”

It was against Ferndale. Goalie Maddy Grandbois pitched another shutout, and freshman midfielder Kirsten Crane connected on one goal, while sophomore forward Alana Gomez hit the other.

“They played as a unit, moving up the field together,” Hereth said. “We had a lot of intention with our passes and worked with each other to make opportunities.”

That was not the case Tuesday.

MG dominated the first 15 minutes or so, controlling the ball and getting off a few shots. Mountain View finally made a run and while not a breakaway the visitors did have the home team outnumbered. Ellie White was fairly open in the middle and got a high hard shot off at about the 18-yard line just below the cross bar at the 25:20 mark.

“I was confident the first fifteen or twenty minutes,” Hereth said. “But once they scored that goal they were intense.”

MV scored again 13 minutes into the second half in a similar situation, after MG had controlled the ball for some time. That goal from Olivia Fothergill 25 yards out was in the upper left corner of the net.

“They had some well-placed shots,” Hereth said.

With 11 minutes remaining, Grandbois made a great save off another high shot, knocking it over the crossbar. “She timed her jump really well,” Hereth said.

Offensively, Crane, her sister Kortney and Jadin Thompson-Sheldon normally control the middle of the field, but that wasn’t the case against the Thunder.

“They shut us down. We were flat,” their coach said.

Since the Thunder was dominating the center, Hereth went with two forwards, rather than three. So when the defenders booted the ball up to score, MG was outnumbered and didn’t get many shots on target.

Hereth said playing a team they knew nothing about was a challenge.

“We had no concept of what they were going to do. The unknown can be really nerve-wracking,” Hereth said.

She added that her defensive backs stood out all season.

“They did phenomenal work. They were like a brick wall, saving us time and time again,” she said of seniors Faith Sherman and Kortney Crane.

As for next year, she’s glad to have top scorer Kirsten Crane back, along with sophomore defender Gi Farias-Hernandez.

“They’re important to our future,” the coach said.

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