Just by watching the start of the second half alone, it was easy to tell the talent that’s permeated through the Ellensburg High School girls soccer team.

There were four shots at goal from four different players, and while Ellensburg didn’t capitalize on any of those kicks, it did in the 57th minute on Maddy Snow’s pass to Melissa Sanchez to give the Bulldogs a 6-1 cushion.

And they never looked back, defeating Toppenish High School Tuesday at home, 8-1.

“We control the game by possessing the ball, passing the ball, getting everyone involved from defense, to midfield to forwards and the score shows it today,” said co-head coach Armando Bravo.

What’s more impressive is the Bulldogs (7-1, 2-1 CWAC) did it without one of its more prolific scorers — sophomore forward Dylan Philip who injured her knee and is taking it week by week.

Four different girls scored in the afternoon. Forward Blake Johnson notched four goals alone (who scored two goals last Thursday versus Prosser in the 3-1 win), Sanchez had two, and Kaelynn Smith and Maddy Snow each had one.

“We still have good success even though we’re missing one of our star players,” Johnson said. “We can do well even if we’re missing our key players.”

Bravo said there’s isn’t much change in Ellensburg’s scheme when a key player goes down like Philip.

“We have injuries, we’re battling injuries, but it’s next girl up,” he said. “Next girl up mentality who’s willing to step up and fill that position at the end of the day.”

Johnson’s hat trick came to fruition in the first half. She got Ellensburg on board in the third minute, and her latter two goals came within a minute of each other near the end of the half.

She scored on a cross pass from Caitlyn Cheney and then used some touch on her next goal, kicking it over the head of the opposing defender and goalie who went after the ball.

It put Ellensburg up 5-1 at the half.

Entering the second half, rarely were the Bulldogs not on Toppenish’s side of the field, taking a myriad of shots on goal.

According to Bravo, Ellensburg had a pass count of 84 in the first half, and 126 in the second half.

“Just shows how we possess the game,” he said. “… You possess the game, you win the game.”

Sanchez’s aforementioned goal gave Ellensburg a 6-1 advantage and Johnson followed, adding some dazzle to the score as she kicked the ball behind her heel.

“I thought it would be cooler than hitting it in front of my body,” Johnson said.

The loss dropped Toppenish to 2-8, 1-2, CWAC on the season.

Ellensburg travels to Wapato High School (2-6, 0-2 CWAC) for a 6 p.m. kick off Thursday.


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