North Tahoe, Truckee girls’ soccer | Wolverines eke out win on Porter’s free kick |

North Tahoe, Truckee girls’ soccer | Wolverines eke out win on Porter’s free kick

Sylas Wright/Sierra SunTruckee senior Kelsey Porter looks at the ref for a call after receiving a shove from the Lakers' Kelley Holman on Tuesday. Porter got the call, then made a 40-yard free kick for the only score of the game. To view a photo gallery, go to

TRUCKEE, Calif. and#8212; Who would have guessed a 40-yard free kick that was intended to be a pass and#8212; but instead trickled all the way to the keeper, then into the goal and#8212; would determine the outcome of Thursday’s rival showdown between the North Tahoe and Truckee girls?

That’s just what happened in the first of two regular-season matchups between the longtime soccer foes.

Just 8 minutes into the contest, Truckee senior Kelsey Porter was awarded a free kick near midfield. She sent it high and into a group of players in front of the goal, hoping a teammate would get a head on it. But the ball bounced through everyone, straight into the hands of Laker goalie Tannyr Pasvantis before squirting from her grip and into the goal.

The unlikely score gave the Wolverines a 1-0 lead, which stood through the final whistle.

and#8220;I was trying to give a header to our forwards,and#8221; Porter explained and#8220;I wasn’t expecting to get that goal. Well, I wasn’t expecting to make it myself.and#8221;

With the win Truckee remains undefeated in the Northern 3A Sierra League, at 3-0-1, while improving to 4-2-1 overall. North Tahoe fell to 1-1-1 in league and 2-3-1 overall.

and#8220;I thought it was a very well-played game between both teams,and#8221; said North Tahoe coach Jon Rockwood. and#8220;Like I’ve said before, it’s a fun rivalry to play. But I do think Truckee is a better team than the scoreboard showed today. They move the ball well, and they make it difficult to mark. We knew it would have to be a defensive game to have a chance.and#8221;

A defensive game it was, as the normally potent Truckee offense converted only the one goal while misfiring on a number of opportunities. The Wolverines took nine shots in the first half and 11 in the second. Credit a hard-nosed effort from the Laker defense, led by senior sweeper Kelsey Wittels.

and#8220;I thought their sweeper did a great job,and#8221; Truckee coach Amy Valdivia said. and#8220;They (the Lakers) played well. They were physical and strong, and they didn’t ever panic.and#8221;

Nevertheless, the coach wasn’t happy with the way her team performed.

and#8220;It wasn’t our best game, but I’m proud of our three freshmen,and#8221; she said, referring to Savannah Meng, Claire Roberts and Kaylee Neill. and#8220;I thought they did a phenomenal job. They were going after everything. So I’m happy with that. And I’m happy to get the win.and#8221;

Besides the solid game from Wittels, Rockwood complimented the play of freshman defender Kami Abi-Nader and senior Julia Lanza. He wasn’t thrilled about the play of his midfield, however, which he said was burned several times in the game.

and#8220;I think we did an incredible job overall,and#8221; said Wittels. and#8220;They are definitely a tough team But we put it together and played hard and#8212; 1-0 is not a bad score.and#8221;

Sophomore goalie Shannon Ondry preserved the shutout for the Wolverines, making several saves to deny Laker runs. Porter said despite the slim lead, she never worried about a tying goal late in the contest.

and#8220;I wasn’t nervous, just because I trust our backs,and#8221; she said. and#8220;I think that’s important that we trust them and they trust us. But they were probably the ones who were nervous, because we couldn’t score.and#8221;

To view a photo gallery from the game, go to

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