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Solid footing

Local girls soccer teams take aim at section crowns as postseason begins today
By: Journal Sports Staff
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As sports clichés go, “a total team effort” is typically among the most yawn-inducing. Considering how Colfax High girls soccer team’s season has gone, however, there’s really no better way coach Steve Robinson can describe it. “This has been a big team effort for us,” said Robinson, whose Falcons (15-6-2) will host Oakdale (12-7-3) at 4 p.m. today in the opening round of the Sac-Joaquin Section Division IV playoffs. “We’ve had some players get hurt and others come in,” Robinson said. “For us to go 10-2 and win the (Pioneer Valley League) is just phenomenal. We’ve got a great chemistry going, and the girls work really hard for each other.” Colfax should get a boost from the return of junior forward Josie Ruzette. The Falcons’ leading scorer, who suffered a neck injury in Colfax’s final PVL match, has 15 goals this season. “We’re hoping she’ll be close 100 percent,” Robinson said. “She always does a great job.” Sophomore forward Adrienne Van Auker has nine goals and six assists this season. Her older sister Kait, a senior, and Sarah Castillo, the Falcons’ senior captain, have anchored the Colfax defense. Other seniors who played key roles in Colfax’s PVL title run include the Harrison sisters, midfielder Samantha and defender Courtney, and midfielder Brianna Mulligan. Sophomore forwards Ashley Rosa and Mariah King lead Oakdale with nine goals apiece. The playoff game will be the first the Falcons have hosted in recent memory, Robinson said. Division VI Denair at Forest Lake Christian, 3:30 p.m. Forest Lake Christian will open the Sac-Joaquin Section Division VI soccer playoffs at home against Denair, the Southern League runner-up. The Falcons are guaranteed home matches until Saturday morning’s final, which will be played at Lincoln High. “That is very, very important,” co-coach Ken Raskin said. “The home-field advantage means we don’t have to travel down to Turlock to play. They have to do the traveling.” Denair finished the regular season 11-2-4 overall. Jessi Cole leads the Coyotes with 25 goals, while Leslie Rodriguez has 10 goals and seven assists. “We will just play our game the same way we’ve played throughout the last half of the season — use our offensive strengths and attack as normal with our defense playing the solid D that they have been,” Raskin said. “Depending on just how good these girls are on Denair’s team, we may have to mark up one of our better defensive players. We’ll figure that out within the first 15 minutes.” Forest Lake (11-9-5), the Central Valley Christian League champion, hasn’t lost since a 1-0 defeat at Victory Christian on April 7. Senior midfielder Jessica Raskin leads the Falcons with 25 goals and 11 assists. Sophomore midfielder Logan Burke has 14 goals and 13 assists. Golden Sierra at Bradshaw Christian, 3:30 p.m. After settling for second place in the Golden Empire League, the Grizzlies (18-3-4) hit the road to face the Sacramento Metro Athletic League champions. Golden Sierra hopes to keep its prolific offense clicking with senior Helen See (29 goals) and junior Mackenzie Gleason (20 goals, 29 assists) leading the way. Bradshaw (12-7-1) lost 6-0 to GEL champion Capital Christian earlier this season.