BEND — The Hood River Valley girls soccer team didn’t have anything to fear heading into last Friday’s matchup with first-place Bend.
But after the Eagles dropped their third league game of the season, 4-1, to the Lava Bears, they have plenty of concerns about their fading playoff hopes.
HRV’s loss, combined with Hermiston’s 2-0 win over Summit on Saturday, has dropped the Eagles (3-3-2) to sixth place in the Intermountain Conference with six to play.
One of those games was to be played Tuesday at Westside Field, as the third-place Redmond Panthers made their way to town (results not available at press time).
And what was a big game one week ago suddenly turned into a must-win.
“Our backs are definitely against the wall,” said coach Sue Farro, whose team also must play second-place Mountain View this week.
“Everything is urgent for us right now, and now that Hermiston has jumped ahead of us, we need to put together a few wins pretty soon.”
HRV had hoped to sneak up on Bend after a lackluster first outing against the Bears on Sept. 16 at Westside — one that resulted in a 3-2 defeat. But the 8-0 Bears proved they were for real, scoring three goals before HRV was able to find the net.
“I can’t figure out why Bend wasn’t very good last year,” Farro said of the Bears, who missed the playoffs in 2002. “They do everything well and their forwards aren’t afraid of anything.”
Farro added that the Bears’ front line showed their experience against a young HRV defense, using their one-on-one skills to break them down. Despite falling behind 3-0 midway through the second half, HRV was able to get one back in the 60th minute.
Senior Lisa Tedford sent a long head ball through to fellow senior Acer Lopez, who took the ball into the box and fired it home for her sixth goal of the season (tied for first on the team with freshman Justine Bryant).
See the Oct. 11 edition for a report on Tuesday’s home matchup with Redmond.