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NWAACC Women's Soccer
As covered in last week's The Week Ahead (view this week), this period saw the fall of the mighty Peninsula women who have looked so dominant all year long. They still top the rankings, but the loss showed that they are human, they are vulnerable, and that they can bounce back from adversity. Just ask Wenatchee Valley. Only two regions really have any question left as to who will take the title. Clackamas is all but crowned in the South, and Peninsula has run away and hid in the West, leaving an exciting race between Spokane and Walla Walla for honors in the East, and a four-way in the North with no solid front runner.
Soaring team of the week: Walla Walla (5-0-0) 22-0 Goal Advantage, +4 in rankings
Freefall team of the week: Lane (0-4-0) 0-7 Goal Advantage, dropped from rankings
Score of the week: Peninsula 15, Wenatchee Valley 1
Bore of the week: Whatcom 0, Edmonds 0
Bore of the week II, the bad sequel: Whatcom 0, Everett 0
Bore of the week II, the bad sequel: Whatcom 0, Everett 0
Previously ranked: No. 1, No. 1 Coaches
Following Peninsula's one and only loss on October 6th to No. 8 Walla Walla, some questions surfaced: how would the Pirates bounce back from the match? Would one loss turn into several? The answer is a most emphatic no. Peninsula jumped on Olympic for a measly 5-0 shutout to regain traction, and then took Wenatchee Valley behind the woodshed for not ten, not eleven, not twelve (I sound like LeBraun) but 15-count-em fifteen goals to none. It's safe to say that Peninsula is back on their game. Feast on this coincidence: 90 goals scored, 9 goals allowed, 9 shutouts. and boom goes the dynamite.
Previously ranked: No. 4, No. 8 Coaches
Spokane was highlighted in October 10th issue of The Week Ahead, pointing them out as a team to watch for a smash into the top two with a good performance against Bellevue. The Sasquatch lived up to the prediction, and here they are with a 4-1 victory over No. 5 Bellevue in hand, they're atop the Eastern Region standings, and they haven't lost since September. However, they have their work cut out for them to stay ahead of a streaking Walla Walla team that finally put the first blemish on the seemingly unbeatable Peninsula Pirates.
Previously ranked: No. 3, No. 3 Coaches
In the last two weeks, Clackamas has allowed only two goals in four matches. Unfortunately for the Cougars, those two goals came in a tough loss to then No. 2 Whatcom, tying their opponent high in goals allowed for the season. All things considered that's not too much to complain about. They're fresh off of a 3-0 shutout (story) over a quicky fading Lane team that, with another loss or a win by Clackamas, has almost no chance of catching the Cougars for first place in the South. Tayler Ficek still maintains a stubborn lead on the rest of the NWAACC with 15 goals scored, which is over half of the goals scored by the entire Clackamas offense.
Previously ranked: No. 8, No. 4 Coaches
Welcome back, Walla Walla. The few messy weeks are past, and the Warriors have come to town with a mission. They've become the first team to take down No. 1 Peninsula, they're now just two points behind No. 2 Spokane for the lead in the East, and they have to this point allowed fewer goals than any other team in the league. Their last five matches have been impressive shutouts. 1-0 over Columbia Basin and Peninsula, 8-0 over Yakima Valley, 2-0 over Tacoma, and 10-0 over Wenatchee Valley. Lookout, world.
Previously ranked: No. 2, No. 6 Coaches
Whatcom's stock was riding high following their 2-0 defeat of Clackamas on October 5th. Not only did they shut down one of the league's best scorers, but they also put up a season opponent high on an extremely stingy defense that is tied for second best in the league with 6 scores allowed. However, Whatcom turned around and laid a pair of eggs - failing to score in two matches in a row, ending in a pair of nil-nil draws with No. 7 Everett and unranked Edmonds. And with the draw with Everett, the Orca's are looking over their shoulders at Everett, who sits at just one point behind them for the Northern Region lead.
Previously ranked: No. 5, No. 7 Coaches
Bellevue hasn't had the easiest of schedules the past two weeks. They drew with Highline, missing out on an important chance to widen the gap between second and third. They shut out Columbia Basin and Lower Columbia, but then had to play No. 2 Spokane and No. 1 Peninsula back to back. While they dropped both games, Bellevue didn't do too badly against the Pirates, holding Peninsula to just two points in a 2-0 loss. The Bulldogs will get another shot at Highline to give themselves security late in the season, which is something that they might need. They close the 2012 campaign on the road at Peninsula.
Previously ranked: NR, No. 8 Coaches
Before falling to Clackamas by a score of 2-0 on October 13th, Everett hadn't lost since early September. A few days later, they had a scoreless draw with Whatcom, but their early season scoring issues seem to be a thing of the past for the most part. 6 scores on Green River and 10 on SW Oregon can do a lot for a team's offensive numbers, and they've also emerged as one of the better defensive teams in the league, tied for fourth in total goals allowed and shutouts. However, Everett definitely can't get comfortable where they're at. One point separates them from first place Whatcom, two points from Shoreline in third, and four points from fourth place Edmonds. Everett could find themselves in a completely different spot with a run one way or the other.
Previously ranked: No. 7, NR Coaches
Shoreline had slowly been on the decline, sputtering and slipping on their way out of the rankings until they faced Chemeketa on October 6th. Their 5-0 victory tied the best all season, and they followed it up with an even more impressive 3-0 shutout of Lane. That game more or less served as the knockout punch for Lane's place in the rankings, and stood as the worst Lane had suffered up until that point. Shortly afterwards, though, Shoreline missed out on an important opportunity to grab three points from Skagit Valley and tie Everett for second in the North. They now sit two points behind EVCC and two ahead of Edmonds, making for an exciting final few weeks before the playoffs.
Teams added: Everett
Teams dropped: Lane