Cedar Park Christian makes most of its opportunity to beat Ridgefield soccer

By Paul Danzer, Columbian community sports reporter

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CAMAS — Sometimes, the significance of missed opportunities isn’t immediately apparent.

The Ridgefield boys soccer team started well in Saturday’s Class 1A state quarterfinal match against Cedar Park Christian.

But holding possession and pushing the attack didn’t produce an early goal for the Spudders, and the visiting Eagles made one of their few opportunities count for a 1-0 win at Doc Harris Stadium that ended the Spudders’ season.

Victor Sviridyuk scored in the 31st minute and Cedar Park Christian blanked Ridgefield to advance to meet White Salmon in the state semifinals on Friday at Sunset Chev Stadium in Sumner.

“We had plenty of chances to score. We just couldn’t find the back of the net today,” Ridgefield coach Jason Staley said. “It just happens that way sometimes.”

Sviridyuk’s goal came when he broke behind the Ridgefield defense as two defenders tried to head the ball clear. Steven Dressler collected the ball and sent a pass to Sviridyuk.

Staley said a miscommunication between two Ridgefield defenders appeared to create the opportunity for Sviridyuk.

“They had one shot in the first half and they scored,” Staley said. “And we just couldn’t.”

Ridgefield had high-quality chances early and late, but was shut out for only the second time this season.

Cedar Park Christian coach Ken Kerr said he knew Ridgefield had a strong offense led by forward Travis Heim. So his team focused on defending Heim with multiple players.

“The key to shutting them down was we played as a team,” Kerr said.

Once they scored, the Eagles were able to devote even more players to defense, making it difficult for the Spudders to find space to create true goal-scoring chances.

Eagles goalkeeper Kevin House made seven saves and got help from his defense to pick up the shutout.

Several times Heim got behind the first line of defense and sent the ball across the goal mouth with House out of position. But each time an Eagles defender was first to the ball.

“If we finish a couple of those, it’s a different story,” Staley said.

The only other time Ridgefield was blanked this season was in a 1-0 loss against White Salmon, a team that earlier Saturday moved into the semifinals with an entertaining 4-3 win over Seattle Christian.

“It’s a pretty good feat, I think, for any team to shut us out,” Staley said.

Ridgefield was 2-1 this season against Trico League rival White Salmon, but couldn’t get the goal they needed on Saturday to set up a fourth meeting in the state semifinals.

“So close, especially since the team we would have played next is a team we know we beat a couple of times,” Staley said. “It’s tough to swallow, but that’s the way it goes.”

White Salmon 4, Seattle Christian 3 — Mark Lovrin and Francisco Villanueva each scored twice and the White Salmon Bruins survived a late push from the Seattle Christian Wildcats on Saturday for a 4-3 win in a Class 1A boys soccer state quarterfinal match at Doc Harris Stadium in Camas.