A season of dominance was put to rest by a game of dominance.
The Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaat.at Kalé girls soccer team defeated Soldotna 5-1 in the Division II state championship game on Saturday afternoon in Anchorage.
The speed, skill and ferocity that proved too difficult for all but one team — JDHS finished the season at 19-1-0 and outscored opponents 110-5 — was written all over the Crimson Bears’ state championship win over the Stars.
“They didn’t need to do anything different,” JDHS coach Matt Dusenberry said. “They just needed to go out and play the soccer that they’re capable of playing.”
Senior Malia Miller and freshman Blake Plummer combined for four goals in Saturday’s clincher after junior Eva Goering scored the first goal. Seniors cried and embraced each other after the win, struggling to come to grips with the end of their shared soccer journey.
“We’ve played with each other for so many years that we’re all friends, we all know each other, we see each other in the hallway everyday, you know (we’ll say) ‘See you at practice,’” JDHS senior Michaela Bentley said. “Now it’s all coming to an end and we won’t be able to do that anymore.”
JDHS notched shutouts in 16 of 20 games this year, including all eight of their conference games. South Anchorage, who will battle Dimond on Saturday night in the Division I state title match, was the only victorious team against the Juneau squad this year.
The senior class was also instrumental in last season’s state championship season, when the squad set a new program record for fewest goals allowed and won 13 games.
“It feels really nice especially for all the underclassmen that had come in, showing them that this is doable, this is our level of play and we can win things like this,” Miller said. “I think it’s really important for them and feels good for us, obviously.”
ASAA/First National Bank state soccer championships
Division II girls
Juneau 5, Soldotna 1 (Championship)
Thunder Mountain 3, Kenai 1 (Third place)
Homer 3, North Pole 2 (Fourth place)
Juneau 5, Kenai Central 0 (semifinal)
Soldotna 3, Thunder Mountain 1 (semifinal)
North Pole 2, Kodiak 0 (loser out)
Homer 4, Palmer 0 (loser out)
Shaylin Cesar, Juneau-Douglas; Malia Miller, Juneau-Douglas; Taylor Bentley, Juneau-Douglas; Meijan Leaf, Soldotna; Ryann Cannava, Soldotna; Keana Villanueva, Thunder Mountain; Kapitolina Reutor, Homer; Alissa Maw, Kenai Central; Breeauna O’Rear, North Pole; Elizabeth Knapp, Thunder Mountain;Bethany Morris, Kenai Central; Eva Goering, Juneau-Douglas.