With a dominating effort Monday at Elkhorn’s Browning Field, the top-seeded Community School girls’ soccer team is just one game away from qualifying for the State 3A soccer tournament for the 12th consecutive year—and for the 14th time since the Cutthroat program started in 1996.
Coach Kelly Feldman’s Sun Valley girls (13-2-1) stayed unbeaten in seven home games and stretched their current undefeated streak to 12 since August with a 7-0 win over No. 4-seeded Wendell (4-8-2) in the second round of the High Desert Soccer Conference tourney.
Junior Hannah Dies (23 goals, 69 career) scored her fifth three-goal hat trick of the season and senior Ellie Swanson (13 goals, 72 career) added two goals. The Cutthroats out-shot Wendell 36-3 over 80 minutes. Wendell junior goalkeeper Evelin Vargas had to make a very busy total of 25 saves.
Freshmen Lilly Jenner (14 goals) and Autumn Fluetsch added single goals, and the Cutthroat defense posted its ninth shutout in 16 games. Assists went to Dies (2), Jordan Fitzgerald and Katie Feldman.
Cutthroat senior goalkeeper Ella Marks (4 saves) preserved the shutout with an excellent stop on a strong scoring bid by Trojan senior Hannah Lancaster late in the first half keeping the halftime score 5-0.
Monday’s victory meant the Cutthroats will host the HDSC tourney championship game today, Wednesday at 4:30 p.m. at Browning Field against No. 3-seeded Filer Wildcats (8-6-4).
The Cutthroats will be shooting for their fourth straight HDSC league tourney championship this afternoon on their “Senior Night”.
Filer, a 6-1 and 5-2 loser to the Cutthroats during the season, opened the HDSC tournament with a 3-2 overtime win over No. 6 Declo Saturday in Twin Falls, then upset No. 2-seeded Bliss (9-3-2) by a 2-1 score on Monday, at Bliss.
Today’s winner heads to the Oct. 18-20 State 3A tournament at SunWay Soccer Complex in Twin Falls. There, the HDSC winner meets the winner of an Oct. 13 state play-in game at Lewiston between the Boise-area runner-up and the northern Idaho runner-up squad.
The Boise-area runner-up is likely to be the loser of Tuesday’s 3rd District championship game between No. 1-ranked reigning state champion McCall-Donnelly (13-1-1) and Fruitland. McCall, with seven straight shutouts, is 3-0-1 against Fruitland this season.
On Monday, the Cutthroats scored four goals in the first 16 minutes. Swanson converted the first goal on a cross from Dies. Jenner rifled a shot from the top of the box into the top corner of the net. Dies made no mistake to stash home rebounds for the next two goals after Vargas juggled shots.
In stoppage time, Katie Feldman sent a lovely pass ahead to Fluetsch, who scored her third goal. Wendell picked up its intensity after half and held the Cutthroats scoreless until Fitzgerald delivered a perfect lead pass to Dies for the hat trick at 75 minutes. Swanson scored the final goal on a Dies cross pass at 78 minutes.
Coach Feldman’s Cutthroat teams are now 89-26-5 the last six years and have been particularly strong the last four campaigns—outscoring opponents 383-91 with 41 shutouts in 79 games since 2009.
Yet, despite winning state tournament hardware the last three years, the Cutthroat program is still seeking its first-ever state tournament championship.