Following the Inglemoor girls soccer team’s state semifinal loss, senior defender and captain Rachel Conchi fought through her sadness and put the season into perspective.
She feels lucky to be a part of the Viking squad that burst into the 4A state final-four matches on Nov. 22-23 at Sparks Stadium in Puyallup. The locals lost to Auburn Riverside, 2-0, in the semis and then fell to Gonzaga Prep, 2-1, to notch fourth place.
Inglemoor was a tenacious team that persevered through all that was kicked its way over the last few years, Conchi said.
“Since my sophomore year on this team, we’ve had some pretty low lows, but because of that and because of our will to never give up, we’ve been rewarded with some high highs. I think this season was definitely the highest peak of my high-school soccer career,” she said.
Sophomore forward Julia Monson, who received a sportsmanship medal following the semi match, said the team is one big family. The Viks’ dynamic was working to be positive to each other and to wholly support one another.
She’s had the best time of her life playing with the Vikings over the last few months.
“It meant so much to be here. Losing last year and not being able to go to state was really rough, and then coming back this year and making it this far, it was amazing. Our team has such a good bond,” Monson said.
In the semifinal, Inglemoor’s Ashly Berge hit the crossbar twice early on and Tara Barlowe had a shot denied by the goalkeeper from close range before Auburn Riverside tallied a goal in the 26th minute. Inglemoor goalkeeper Teonni Gonzales made a diving save of her own in the first half.
The Ravens built a 2-0 lead in the 76th minute to qualify for the final.
Conchi said it wasn’t a pretty semifinal match.
“I think that it was a hard game, but I think that I’m proud of how we handled ourselves and how we were able to give it back to them when they gave it to us,” she said.
Down 2-0 in the 74th minute against Gonzaga Prep, Inglemoor’s Amalia Ocampo scored from in close.
As the clock ticked down, Monson’s shot on goal was batted away and then in the final minute, Gonzaga Prep saved two successive shots off the goal line following a Viking corner kick.
During the final match of the season, Inglemoor’s Julianna Barker wowed the crowd with some running, acrobatic throw-ins.
Inglemoor won the school’s first-ever girls soccer 4A KingCo title with an 8-0-1 record and finished 14-3-3 overall. Conchi said that beating Skyline, 4-3, in overtime early in the season and then knocking off Bellarmine Prep, 2-1, in penalty kicks in state were some highlights of the fall campaign.