EAGLE POINT — Ashland’s fancy passing led to two beautiful goals and a 2-0 victory over Eagle Point in nonleague boys soccer action Tuesday at Eagle Stadium.
After a scoreless first half, the Grizzlies broke through quickly after intermission when senior Leo Duetz connected off a nifty backdoor pass from senior Ian Rinefort in the 41st minute.
Rinefort was dribbling toward the right post when he spotted the open Duetz and delivered a perfect feed on a 45-degree angle, and Duetz hammered home the finish from 14 yards out.
Fifteen minutes later, senior Ben Lucero connected after taking a nice pass from senior Jade Bucher. The game-clinching connection began after Bucher controlled the ball as it bounced around in the box and dropped it off to the cutting Lucero, who fired a one-timer into the back of the net.
“I thought they looked terrific,” said Ashland co-head coach Brad Roupp, who will be teaming up again with fellow coach Abdi Guled. “I just think this team passes incredibly well, they share the ball well; they’re just soccer smart. They know what the game is and they play it well. It’s going to be a fun game to watch.”
Roupp, whose team improved to 2-0 overall including last week’s season-opening win over Henley, said the Grizzlies are equipped to have a long, successful season, and knows it.
“This team has high expectations,” he said. “They want to go to the end and we’ll see, but if we can avoid injuries and stay healthy we are a strong side. I believe in this group. They’re just fun to be around.
“And not only do they have high expectations, but so do Abdi and I. It’s something to watch.”
Senior stopper Declan Hinkley also had a standout game for the Grizzlies, thwarting Eagle Point’s attack and quickly turning defense into offense.
“(Hinkley) comes out of the back and just dominates play,” Roupp said.
Ashland hits the road again on Friday for games against Bend (Friday) and Mountain View (Saturday).
Eagle Point fell to 0-2.
Ashland remained undefeated with a resounding 7-1 nonleague win over Eagle Point on Tuesday.
The Grizzlies, who improved to 3-0, have outscored their opponents by a combined score of 17-2 heading into Friday's game against Bend.
Alex Crane had 18 kills as Ashland pulled out a four-set road win over Eagle Point in Midwestern League action Tuesday at Eagle Point High School.
Emily DeVall added 10 kills and 11 digs and Grace Angermeier and Sydney Philpott had 17 digs apiece for the Grizzlies, who improved to 2-2 in the MWL and 2-3 overall with the 25-16, 21-25, 25-18, 25-23 victory.
Also for Ashland, Lili Smith had four aces and Sophia Rooney six kills.
Eagle Point fell to 2-2, 1-2 in the MWL.
Joe Zavala is a reporter for the Ashland Daily Tidings. Reach him at 541-821-0829 or email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter at @Joe_Zavala99.