Sometimes, one is all it takes.
It took the Pendleton Buckaroos nearly 41 minutes to get their first shot on goal in their Class 5A?girls soccer play-in game against Mountain View on Friday at Blue Mountain Community College.
Luckily, it went in.
Pendleton took a 1-0 lead on Mona Bredal-Thorsens early second-half goal, then held on to extend their playoff lives against the Cougars futile offensive flurry.
The Bucks didnt put another shot on target, and after getting just one of their own in the first half the Cougars cut through Pendletons defense for several scoring chances in the games final minutes.
We got a little bit unsettled,?said Pendleton coach Rocky Dillenburg. Its one of those things you would hope a more experienced team would be able to handle that kind of pressure but were kind of playing our way through all that right now.
Pendleton missed a chance to score an insurance goal in the second half when a penalty kick by Marisol Argueta sailed over the crossbar, but goal keeper McKenzie Sherman made six second-half saves and sweeper Chelsey Parker had another to preserve the shutout.
Although each half may have ended with Mountain View (4-10-1) looking like the aggressor, Pendleton (9-5-1) was able to catch the Cougars on their heels early in both periods.
Its kind of a mantra of ours that we want to score in the first five minutes, Dillenburg said. So I was really pleased to see the girls push and get one.
After watching a few good first-half scoring chances end in non-threatening shots, Pendleton was quickly back down by the Cougar goal after intermission. Their first trip deep into Cougar territory was turned away without a shot, but on their second they found paydirt.
Controlling the ball just outside the penalty box, Argueta laced a crossing pass back toward the top of the box and a trailing Bredal-Thorsen.
The Norwegian exchange student used a chest bump to deflect the ball past a Cougar defender, then quickly buried the shot in the back of the net.
I just wanted to kick it in,?said an excited Bredal-Thorsen, whose goal lifted Pendleton to its first appearance in the girls soccer Round of 16. I?love this team.
The Bucks arent sure who their next opponent will be, but Dillenburg knows theyll need to step up their game to keep advancing.
Were not going to able to as haphazard in the back as we were today,?he said. We need to do a better job of settling the ball, finding the open player and making the simple pass. Its really something we're going to have to concentrate on Monday.
Pendleton will play its next game on the road on Tuesday.
Contact Matt Entrup at firstname.lastname@example.org or (541) 966-0838.