State soccer: Hockinson, Columbia River, Ridgefield, and Camas have big goals

Three teams from 2A GSHL make it to the state’s final four, while Camas is top seed in final four of 4A girls soccer tournament

It’s the 2A Greater St. Helens League invitational, otherwise known as the WIAA’s Class 2A state girls soccer tournament.

OK, officially, it’s not the GSHL invitational. However, in the past two years that this tournament has been played, Columbia River, Hockinson, and Ridgefield have made it to the Final Four.

In Class 4A, Camas is the No. 1 seed and has also reached the state semifinals.

All girls soccer champions will be determined this week.

To get here, teams needed all of their athletes on their roster to peak at the right time. Whether they are star players or not. 

At Hockinson, for example, Molly Romanchock would never consider herself a star. Her teammates, however, voted her as the squad’s MVP, according to Hockinson coach George Moya.

Molly Romanchock, center, is surrounded by her Hockinson teammates. Romanchock, her coach said, is the quintessential team-first player. The Hawks are in the Class 2A state semifinals. Photo by Paul Valencia
Molly Romanchock, center, is surrounded by her Hockinson teammates. Romanchock, her coach said, is the quintessential team-first player. The Hawks are in the Class 2A state semifinals. Photo by Paul Valencia

“There’s a few players who come to mind who do so much for the team and are behind the scenes,” Moya said. “They don’t get the accolades, the glory. They work their tails off. The positivity is there.”

But as far as the one Hawk who personifies that role: Romanchock.

“That’s really nice, but our team is what makes us the team,”  Romanchock said. “I’m just a part of the team. It’s nice that he said that, but I just work hard so that my team can … get as far as we can.”

The Hawks made it to the state championship match in 2019, losing to league rival Columbia River. There was no state tournament last year, but in the abbreviated COVID season, Hockinson went undefeated, did not give up a goal, and won the district championship.

Soccer experts have noted that Hockinson would have been the prohibitive favorite had there been a state tournament.

Anna Iniguez battled her way into the starting lineup and has made a huge impact on and off the field for the Columbia River Rapids. The soccer team has reached the state’s final four. Photo by Paul Valencia
Anna Iniguez battled her way into the starting lineup and has made a huge impact on and off the field for the Columbia River Rapids. The soccer team has reached the state’s final four. Photo by Paul Valencia

“We lost a lot of seniors,” Romanchock said. “We definitely had some setbacks (this season). But our seniors this year have really stepped up. We’ve had a lot of players who stepped up that we didn’t expect.”

In 2019, Hockinson beat Ridgefield in the semifinals. Those two teams will square off again in the semifinals on Friday night.

“I think we can win if we play our hardest,” Romanchock said. “We can do as well as we did last year if we just play hard.”

No matter the results, Hockinson has two more matches this year. The semifinals and then either the championship match or the third-place match.

“I’m just looking forward to spending the last couple of days of my senior season with all my teammates, and just hanging out with them and playing our hardest together,” Romanchock said.

Win or lose, the Hawks will be united.

“This program, I love it so much,” Romanchock said. “With all the community and all the friends we’ve made, and the team is so happy all of the time. Our positivity is just unmatched.”

At Columbia River, coach Filomon Afenegus said he and the Rapids have been thrilled with the progress of Anna Iniguez.

“It’s been amazing to see her battle for three years to get into the starting lineup,” Afenegus said. “She’s been in the starting lineup this year, and she’s been great for us. She’s the leading goal scorer, but what is also cool about her is her level of humility, her willingness to care about her teammates, to serve the team. She radiates positivity to her teammates and just helps to create an amazing environment.”

The Rapids won the state title in 2019. Naturally, that is the goal again this year, but for Iniguez, this week will mean so much more than whatever the final scores reveal.

“This program, it’s helped shape me into the person I am today,” Iniguez said. “We’re such a family. I’m looking forward to working our hardest and spending time with my soccer family. We’re going to kind of cherish this last week.”

Iniguez is playing for two schools, as well. She is a student at the Vancouver School of Arts and Academics. She plays sports for Columbia River.

“This is such an amazing soccer program,” she said. “I’m really proud to be able to represent that and bring a little bit of that to my school, too.”

The Class 2A final four is in Shoreline. Ridgefield, the No. 3 seed in the tournament, takes on Hockinson at 6 p.m. Friday in one semifinals. Columbia River, the 2019 state champion, is the No. 5 seed this year. The Rapids play No. 1 Archbishop Murphy at 8 p.m. Friday.

For an earlier story on Ridgefield’s success this season, click here: https://www.clarkcountytoday.com/sports/state-girls-soccer-ridgefield-spudders-hope-this-is-their-time/

The Class 4A soccer final four is in Puyallup, and the Camas Papermakers lead the way with an undefeated record and a No. 1 seed. The Papermakers are 20-0, including victories over Kennedy Catholic and West Valley of Yakima in the opening rounds of the state tournament. (For an earlier story on Camas’ success this season, click here: https://www.clarkcountytoday.com/sports/hs-girls-soccer-camas-looking-for-return-to-excellence/

WIAA State Soccer

Class 4A

At Sparks Stadium in Puyallup

Semifinal: No. 1 Camas vs. No. 4 Skyline, 8 p.m. Friday

Championship match is 5 p.m. Saturday

Class 2A

At Shoreline Stadium

Semifinal: No. 3 Ridgefield vs. No. 7 Hockinson, 6 p.m. Friday
Semifinal: No. 5 Columbia River vs. No. 1 Archbishop Murphy, 8 p.m. Friday

Championship match is 5 p.m. Saturday

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