Taylor Beckmeyer scored just a minute after entering the game to put Skyline back in the title game with a 1-0 semifinal win over defending champs Issaquah.
PUYALLUP — Talk about making an immediate difference.
That was Taylor Beckmeyer’s entrance into the Class 4A state girls soccer semifinal on Friday night at Sparks Stadium. The Skyline freshman midfielder got to work quick.
Beckmeyer, within a minute of entering the match, drilled a goal in the 24th minute to break scoreless tie as the Spartans turned back KingCo 4A rival Issaquah 1-0, keeping the defending Class 4A state champions Eagles from a repeat.
The Spartans (14-7-1) can add a fifth state title and join four other schools atop the big-school (4A, 3A) list for most state crowns. A win over Camas (19-2-0) in Saturday’s championship match at 4 p.m. would put Skyline in a group along with Issaquah, Kennedy Catholic, Shorecrest and Lakeside.
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“I just went in knowing I had to give it my all,” said Beckmeyer, who played 20 minutes. “I was just doing it for the players around me, and it makes me feel so happy that we won. When you do that, you just have the feeling of everyone around you, supporting you. You know you’re fighting for everyone around you.
“I’m so glad I could contribute to that. You go into a game like this with your nerves so high, because you want to beat (Issaquah) so bad, because we’re rivals.”
Camas (19-2-0) reached the final by rallying for a 2-1 win over Central Valley of Spokane Valley with two goals in the final two minutes, including the game-winner in the 80th minute by senior Maddie Kemp, who tallied her 140th career goal.
Issaquah (13-2-2) meets the Central Valley (Spokane) (17-2-1) for third place Saturday at noon.
The Spartans tied for second in the KingCo 4A regular-season standings, but have won 10 of their last 11 matches after a stretch of losing five of seven.
“We’ve certainly faced a bunch of adversity,” Skyline coach Don Braman said. “We sorted a bunch of things out that’s for sure.”
Katelyn Reilly scored a goal in the ninth minute for Skyline, but an offsides call wiped off the tally.
Issaquah had two scoring chances carom off the top of the crossbar in the first half. Chloe Huling hit a left-footed blast from distance off the bar in the fourth minute, and defender Kate Wilkinson’s header on a corner kick skimmed off the bar in the 39th minute.
In the 57th minute, the Eagles attack nearly scored twice after three successive corner kicks. The rally started with a Skyline defender clearing a Megan Sullivan shot of the back line and ending with a header sailing high and wide left of the mark.
Jaden Humbyrd narrowly missed a shot over the crossbar in the 66th minute for Issaquah.
Skyline leads the all-time series with Issaquah 14-11-4, breaking a three-match losing streak.
Class 3A state semifinals
Holy Names (16-6-1), which finished second in the Metro League Mountain Division during the regular season, extended their playoff magic by reaching the championship game for the first time since winning it all in 1999 after beating Prairie 3-1.
Tara Shelton got Holy Names on the board in the 18th minute, and Megan DeTuerk tallied in the 36th minute for a 2-0 lead. The Falcons cut it to 2-1 in the 50th minute.
Sophomore forward Julia Causbie gave the Cougars an insurance goal in stoppage time.
Holy Names takes on unbeaten Gig Harbor (22-0-0) in the final at 2 p.m. Saturday.
Class 2A state semifinals
Another dominant playoff win sent Liberty (16-2-2) into their third state-title match appearance in a row after beating Burlington-Edison 3-0.
The defending Class 2A state champions go for the school’s third title, all in the last six seasons.
Liberty meets the Sehome, which beat Columbia River in a shootout, in the championship on Saturday at 4 p.m. at Shoreline Stadium.