Truckee girls win regional soccer title
The Truckee girls’ soccer team added to an already impressive season with a run through the Nevada Interscholastic Activities Association Class 3A Northern Region Girls Soccer Championship tournament to capture their second straight league championship.
The eight-team tournament was held last weekend at Lowry High School in Winnemucca, Nev., and featured teams from Truckee, North Tahoe and Incline.
The Wolverines (19-4-1, 15-0-1 Northern League) came into the tournament as the No. 1 seed, and faced Dayton in the first round on Thurs. Nov. 2.
The girls left little doubt who the top team in the league was with five goals in the first half on their way to an 8-0 victory.
Junior standout Ava Seelenfreund scored five goals in the game. Junior Amber Simonpietri added a pair of goals for Truckee, and sophomore Liliana Hosefros netted the team’s other goal. Junior Daphne Lezo led the team with two assists.
The Wolverines then took on a familiar opponent in North Tahoe the following day, in what Truckee Head Coach Kyle Kelly called the team’s “toughest game of the year.”
Truckee had defeated North Tahoe in two prior meetings this season, but the Lakers jumped out to an early lead off a deep free kick by junior AJ Hurt.
Seelenfreund then found the equalizer in the 36th minute off a through ball from Simonpietri. The Wolverines standout would strike again two minutes later on a defensive miscue by the Lakers to give Truckee a 2-1 lead going into halftime.
The Lakers received a red card toward the end of the first half, and would compete in the second half down a player. Still, North Tahoe continued to attack, according to Kelly, resulting in senior Magnolia Neu evening the game by bending in a free kick in the 45th minute.
Seelenfreund would later find the go-ahead goal in the 72nd minute off an assist by senior keeper Izzy Abarno.
The loss caps off a tremendous season for the Lakers (15-4-1, 12-3-1 Northern League), and was among the best in recent years for the school. North Tahoe defeated Incline, 2-1, in the opening round of the tournament.
Sophomore Maile Markham led the team with 29 goals and nine assists in 19 games. Neu was next with nine goals, followed by sophomore Olivia Sproehnle with five goals. Hurth finished the year with five goals and eight assists. Sophomore keeper Casey Garrity led the team at net, and finished the year with five shutouts.
The win catapulted the Wolverines into the league championship game against South Tahoe, and earned Truckee a berth into the state tournament.
The contest against the Vikings remained scoreless until part way through the second half when sophomore Olivia Vigano found Seelenfreund for a goal in the 54th minute. The goal led to a flood of Truckee scoring with Vigano finding the back of the net in the 65th minute, followed by a pair of goals from Seelenfreund in the 66th and 72nd minutes as Truckee took the championship behind a 3-0 victory.
“The third game against South Tahoe was as perfect a performance we could have hoped for,” Kelly said. “We were patient in possession not trying to force passes into pressure and relentless when pressing the ball out of possession.”
Seelenfreund finished the tournament with 11 goals. Kelly also highlighted the play of Simonpietri, Vigano, and sophomore Sami Orozco.
“Vigano was almost unplayable most of the weekend,” Kelly said. “She was a creative force in attack, and was relentless in her work rate defensively.”
Truckee will next face the No. 2 seed from the Southern League, Pahrump Valley, in the state semifinals. The game will be at 2 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 10, at Spanish Springs High School in Sparks, Nev.
After an undefeated run through the Class 3A Northern League during the regular season, North Tahoe (18-3, 16-0 Northern League) had their 18-game winning streak and season halted when they were upset 2-1 by Sparks in the tournament semifinals.
The Lakers had defeated Dayton 11-0 in the opening round of the tournament.
On the other side of the bracket, No. 2 seeded Truckee opened tournament play with an 8-0 win over Yerington. The Wolverines then defeated South Tahoe 4-0 in the semifinals to capture a state tournament bid and move into the Northern Region championship game against Sparks on Saturday, Nov. 4.
The No. 3 seeded Railroaders would carry their momentum over from the North Tahoe game, taking a 2-1 win over Truckee to claim the league championship. Sparks has now won the past four league titles, and are the defending state champions.
Truckee will next face Southern League champion, Sunrise Mountain (18-1, 11-1 Sunset League), in the semifinals of the state tournament on Friday, Nov. 10, at noon at Spanish Springs High School in Sparks, Nev.