SALEM — Southern Oregon had to replace the majority of its scoring from 2016's Cascade Conference championship team, but help from up and down the roster has placed the Raiders in the thick of another title race.
In Saturday's 1-0 defeat of Corban at the CFC Complex, a new hero emerged. Freshman midfielder Brionna Wood scored the first goal of her collegiate career in the 36th minute, getting an assist from another freshman, Hannah Taie, as the Raiders completed a weekend road sweep to improve to 6-4 overall and 3-1 in the Cascade Conference.
Wood became the fifth Raider to score a game-winner in six victories and the ninth to tally overall.
Corban, which entered the weekend in first place, dropped to 6-5-1 and 3-2-1.
After going six games in a row without a shutout, the Raiders have pitched three straight. Hannah Ceciliani corralled six saves, all in the first half for her highest total in a shutout this year, to seal the deal.
In eight CCC road games over the last two seasons, SOU has kept six opponents scoreless.
And for the first time since Aug. 24, the Raiders will finally return home next Friday to play Eastern Oregon and Saturday to host Warner Pacific. Both games start at 4:30 p.m.
They won despite being out-shot by the Warriors, 19-9, and putting just one on goal in each half.
CORBAN 2, SOUTHERN OREGON 0: At Salem, Southern Oregon's five-game winning streak ended unceremoniously against fifth-ranked Corban in Cascade Conference play.
In a battle of the CCC's last two unbeaten teams, the Raiders (5-6, 5-1 CCC) were unable to slow down the Warriors (10-0-1, 6-0), who have won 11 consecutive conference home conference games dating back to 2015. They also remained the only CCC squad SOU has yet to take a point from.
In the 25th minute, Jesse Martin scored unassisted with a shot fired into the lower-right corner of the goal. And in the 78th, Julio Miranda doubled the lead with an assist from Nathaniel Cheney.
Jordan Farr, an all-conference goalkeeper, made four saves to keep SOU off the board.
The Raiders had only allowed one second-half shot on goal in CCC action this season prior to Miranda's goal.
In second place, the Raiders are still three points ahead of third-place Providence (Mont.) (4-2).
They'll return home next Friday and Saturday to play Eastern Oregon and Warner Pacific. Both games start at 7 p.m.
SACRAMENTO STATE CHALLENGE: At Sacramento, Calif., Noah Oberriter and Jessa Perkinson shined for Southern Oregon University's top-ranked men's and fifth-ranked women's cross country teams in another fast, NCAA-dominated field at the Sacramento State Capital Cross Challenge.
The Raiders were the only NAIA team in attendance at Haggin Oaks Golf Course and finished sixth of 22 in the men's point standings and 17th of 25 on the women's side.
In the men's 8,000-meter race, Oberriter clocked in at 24:52.2 to place 23rd of 227 total individuals, edging out teammates Connor Cushman (25:09.4) and Kevin Poteracke (25:12.0) in 35th and 36th. Ray Schireman was 52nd in 25:56.6, and SOU's other three scorers came out on the other end of a large, middling pack — Aidan Paulk (26:24.4) in 112th, Alex Harbert (26:38.7) in 133rd, and Caleb Diaz (26:45.0) in 140th.
It was the second time in as many races that Oberriter, Cushman and Poteracke filled out SOU's top three, though Cushman and Oberriter swapped spots the second time around.
Perkinson remained leaps and bounds in front of her teammates, completing the women's 6K in 21:42.8 for 26th place in a 194-person field. Kayle Blackmore was 105th in 23:10.9, and the next five scorers — Jenna Storms (23:51.2), Shayla Potratz (23:52.5), Lauren Fillipow (23:58.3), Jamie Chelberg (24:10.7) and Kim Nava (24:17.2) — came in within 26 seconds of each other between the 144th and 165th spots.
Chico State claimed the men's title and San Jose State the women's.
CORBAN 3, SOUTHERN OREGON 0: At Ashland, Corban took control early and didn't let go in a 25-15, 25-20, 25-21 sweep.
The 16th-ranked Warriors (14-6, 9-2 Cascade Conference), behind middle Alaina Gentili's 16 kills on 25 tries, attacked at a .230 team clip and stuffed the Raiders (7-6, 5-4) 10 times to keep them at a .077 average.
Marandah Boeder was in on seven of those blocks while Adrian Aguayo and Amber Parker aided the attack with nine kills apiece.
The loss spoiled a career night for SOU outside hitter Haleigh Wagman, who delivered eight kills on 14 swings off the bench. Taylor Ristvedt added seven, and Ashlyn Flynn and Kadyn Jones chipped in 10 digs and eight digs, respectively.
Corban stormed out to a 6-0 lead to start the match and the Raiders never regrouped in the first set. In the second, SOU trailed 18-17 before Gentili's kill started a 7-3 spurt that Aguayo and Boeder finished with a block.
The score was tied eight times and the lead changed on five occasions in the third, but the Warriors scored four unanswered points after trailing 18-17, sparked by Gentili's final three kills, to swing it in their favor.
SOU will host William Jessup (Calif.) in a nonleague match at 7:30 p.m. Monday.