High School Soccer

Meridian faces stiff test from King’s Way Christian in 1A first round

Meridian’s Sydney Gospodinovich dives to stop a shot on goal by Sultan in October 2015 at Lummi Nation School.
Meridian’s Sydney Gospodinovich dives to stop a shot on goal by Sultan in October 2015 at Lummi Nation School. eabell@bhamherald.com

Meridian at King’s Way Christian

The Meridian girls soccer team returns to the Class 1A state playoffs Wednesday when it travels to Vancouver to face King’s Way Christian. The Trojans will have to solve a defense that has not allowed a goal in more than a month.

Time: 6 p.m.

Site: King’s Way Christian

1109 Meridian GSOC (3)

Scouting the Trojans

Coach: Terri Tigert

League: Northwest Conference

District: Northwest/Sea-King (No. 3 seed)

State appearances: 12 (14-13)

State titles: 1 (2008)

Meridian beat Lynden Christian 5-1 in a winner-to-state game in the 1A bi-district tournament Saturday, marking the seventh time this year the Trojans have scored five or more goals. It also helped removed the bitter taste from a 5-0 loss to King’s in the Northwest District title game a week earlier. Meridian heads back to state after a one-year absence and has won in the first round the past three times it’s advanced to state. Senior Payton Lunde is a star up top for the Trojan, but Meridian has plenty of other weapons, such as Micaela Pimento and Mali Mack. Senior keeper Sydney Gospodinovich has seven shutouts this season and gets plenty of help from defenders Emily Stuth, Victoria Melnyk and Emily Kooiman.

Scouting the Knights

Coach: Tina Ellertson

League: 1A Trico

District: Southwest (No. 1 seed)

State appearances: 2 (0-2)

State titles: None

King’s Way Christian heads to state for the third straight year, but is still seeking its first state victory. This seems to be a team capable of doing just that. After losing 1-0 to Overlake in their Sept. 10 opener and tying Montesano 1-1 Sept. 15, the Knights have allowed just one goal, which came in a 9-1 win over White Salmon Oct. 4. They have not allowed an opponent to score in 10 games since, inclduing a 3-0 win over Elma and a 4-0 victory over Montesano in the 1A Southwest District Tournament. Sophomore McKenzie Ellertson is the regining 1A Trico League MVP, and she had a pair of goals and an assist in the district win over Elma. Sophomore Hannah Moats is the only goalkeeper listed on the roster.