Girls soccer: Ridgefield proves elite status with playoff victory

Spudders advance to the state quarterfinals with a 3-0 win over Sequim

RIDGEFIELD — They made it to the Elite Eight with a victory Tuesday night.

But the Ridgefield Spudders already knew they were elite. Especially after last week, when they claimed a district championship by stopping a previously undefeated team, a rival.

Brooke Weese celebrates her goal Tuesday night that gave Ridgefield a 3-0 lead over Sequim in the opening round of the Class 2A state girls soccer tournament. Photo by Mike Schultz
Brooke Weese celebrates her goal Tuesday night that gave Ridgefield a 3-0 lead over Sequim in the opening round of the Class 2A state girls soccer tournament. Photo by Mike Schultz

“Our momentum right now is amazing,” said senior Brooke Weese, who scored a goal and assisted on another in Ridgefield’s 3-0 win over Sequim on Tuesday night in the opening round of the Class 2A state girls soccer tournament. “We needed that energy.”

Yes, that victory over Columbia River last week in the district championship match was a big deal. It showed the Spudders they really could accomplish anything.

“That meant everything to us,” Wees said. “We couldn’t even focus in school we were so focused on playing them.”

After securing the district’s top seed, it was time to focus on state.

Taylor Hope scored in the first half, Ridgefield controlled possession for most of the match, and then the Spudders added two second-half goals in a span of about 90 seconds to advance to Saturday’s quarterfinals. Ridgefield will host Port Angeles.

“This is where I got my freshman year,” Weese said, referring to the quarterfinals. “I’m excited to be back there.”

So, too, is fellow senior Annika Farley, who is celebrating a lot these days.

“It’s kind of surreal. We haven’t been to the final eight since my freshman year, and I’m signing my letter of intent,” she said. “It’s weird I’m actually doing what I made a decision to do so long ago.”

Annika Farley gets the ball past two Sequim defenders during their match Tuesday. Farley and the Spudders are going to the state quarterfinals. Farley also is expected to sign with the University of Portland on Wednesday. Photo by Mike Schultz
Annika Farley gets the ball past two Sequim defenders during their match Tuesday. Farley and the Spudders are going to the state quarterfinals. Farley also is expected to sign with the University of Portland on Wednesday. Photo by Mike Schultz

It was two years ago when she told the University of Portland that she would sign with the program. Wednesday is Signing Day.

Tuesday’s victory just makes Wednesday even more special.

Ridgefield got on the board in the 26th minute courtesy of a perfectly placed shot by Hope.

The scoring play originated about 50 yards upfield when Weese got control of a pass, made a smooth move to get past her defender, then advanced the ball toward the net before finding Hope down the left side.

Hope controlled the ball, stopped, took the ball back to create some space from her defender, then fired a low shot for a 1-0 lead.

At that time, Sequim did not even have a shot nor a scoring threat all match. 

Still, it would take almost 50 minutes before Ridgefield could really feel at ease.

Farley buried a penalty kick at the 83rd minute to make it 2-0.

A minute later, Weese added a goal off a sweet pass from Alyssa Dewey.  

“One-zero and two-zero are not great leads,” Farley said. “Three-zero is ideal.”

The Spudders believe they can keep this thing going, all the way to the finals.

“I feel we can beat anyone if we play our best,” Farley said.

Ridgefield’s Paytn Barnette chases down the ball during the Spudders 3-0 win over Sequim in the state playoffs Tuesday. Photo by Mike Schultz
Ridgefield’s Paytn Barnette chases down the ball during the Spudders 3-0 win over Sequim in the state playoffs Tuesday. Photo by Mike Schultz

In the 3A tournament, Mountain View went on the road Tuesday and beat Marysville Getchell 2-0 to advance to the quarterfinals.

Four other Clark County teams play opening round matches Wednesday: Union, Columbia River, Hockinson, and La Center. 

For brackets, go to the WIAA’s tournament central girls soccer page here: http://wiaa.com/subcontent.aspx?SecID=1155

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About The Author

Paul Valencia joins ClarkCountyToday.com after more than two decades of newspaper experience. He became the face of high school sports coverage in Clark County during his 17 years at The Columbian. Before moving to Vancouver, Paul worked at Oregon daily newspapers in Pendleton, Roseburg, and Salem. A graduate of David Douglas High School in Portland, Paul enlisted in the U.S. Army, serving three years as a soldier/journalist. He and his wife Jenny recently celebrated their 20th anniversary. They have a son who has a passion for karate and Minecraft. Paul’s hobbies include: Watching the Raiders play football, reading about the Raiders playing football, and waiting to watch and read about the Raiders playing football.

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