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Turlock girls outshoot Pride, make playoffs

POSTED October 26, 2012 7:51 p.m.

It was the last Central California Conference match of the year on Thursday when Pitman High hosted Turlock High — but for some it was the last of their lifetime, a fact that wasn’t lost on the Lady Bulldogs. End game nostalgia resulted in a desire to go out with a bang. Turlock did just that, jumping on the Pride early on its way to a 5-2 victory that just so happened to also clinch a spot in the Division I San Joaquin Section playoffs as the CCC’s third seed.

“It was definitely a must win in our minds even if it wasn’t for playoffs,” Turlock’s head coach Sonja Raynes said. “It was the last league game for the seniors so I think that was the biggest motivating factor for the girls.”

Pitman struck first with a Kamarin Waite goal in the first quarter only to have Turlock respond with a second quarter goal from Savanna Schaffer. No other goals were scored in the first half as the Bulldogs and Pride engaged in defensive warfare and both goalies defended the net with purpose. The score was tied 1-1 heading into halftime.

The second half was a different story all together. Schaffer scored her second goal of the night with 4:55 in the third quarter to give Turlock its first lead of the night. Pitman’s Anna Porter tied the game once again three minutes later with a seven yard shot, but Rebekah Groteguth snatched back the lead for the Bulldogs in the closing seconds of the third quarter. The final quarter of the match consisted of heavy defense and scoring shots from Paige Avellar and Groteguth. Pitman did a good job containing Turlock for the most part, but with little to no offense to speak of a win was out of the question.

“They played some really good defense but we didn’t really have any offense,” Pitman’s head coach Michaela Solario said. “We weren’t taking the chances.”

“They wanted to go out with a bang, proud of themselves and the team,” Raynes said of her girls.

Turlock’s next step is the post-season where it will try to improve on last year’s second round appearance. Their opponent has yet to be determined.

“We’re going to stick to the things we do well,” Raynes said. “We’re also going to add more condition though, because the pools will be bigger.”

“Being third in our league we know we’re going to hit a hardcore team straight up,” she added.

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