A goal by Jose Muro late in the game was the single highlight for the Hood River Valley High School varsity soccer team's 1-3 at-home loss against Cleveland Tuesday night. The Eagles, now 2-1 after wins over Putnam and Lakeridge, had expected a difficult game against the Warriors, 1-1, of the PIL.
"We can't take anything away from Cleveland; they're a really good team this year," said Coach Jaime Rivera. "We got caught off-guard early and got out of our rhythm. Once that happens, it's really difficult go get back on track."
The larger, more physical Cleveland squad scored fairly early in the first half, and added two more in the second before Muro, off a direct free kick, put Hood River on the board with a bullet from about 25 yards.
"It was a sweet shot," Rivera said. "Many of our mistakes were mental. We knew they were going to be tough, and we let them pass around us and chase the ball. It was a learning experience, and it's good to get these lessons out of the way early in the season."
The win over the Eagles also put resurgent Cleveland into the top spot in the OSAA 5A power rankings
The team traveled to Wilson High School Thursday to take on the Trojans.
The Eagles showed improvement against Wilson, getting first-half goals from Jose Campos and Sean Lund, and came away with a 2-2 draw.
The Eagles will continue to face some tough opponents as their non-league schedule winds down. Next up is No. 4-ranked Madison at home, followed by 6A Grant and No. 8-ranked Woodburn.