Glencoe senior Christian Martinez Trejo works for possession against Sherwood on Monday night. (Photo by John Lariviere)
Glencoe senior Christian Martinez Trejo works for possession against Sherwood on Monday night. (Photo by John Lariviere)

A month ago, a repeat Pacific Conference title seemed like a lofty goal for Glencoe's boys soccer team.

The Crimson Tide, who graduated five first-team all-conference players from last season, were still putting their new pieces together as they entered conference play with a 1-6-1 record.

On Monday night, though, Glencoe once again stood at the top of the Pacific after a 2-0 win at Sherwood with the conference title on the line in the regular-season finale. One year after sharing the title with Century, the Crimson Tide (5-7-2, 4-1-1) won it outright over McMinnville (7-1-6, 3-0-3) and Sherwood (8-4-2, 3-1-2).

“It means a lot because there were a lot of people that were doubting us,” senior Christian Martinez Trejo said. “People were expecting us to not even win a game in league. So to prove everyone wrong, it feels special.”

Crimson Tide coach Tom Stephens praised his team's resilience.

“I just kept telling them that we played the third-hardest preseason of anybody,” Stephens said. “The guys believed in each other and believed in the system, and we made a run through the conference. Back-to-back, I'm pretty excited about that.”

Glencoe took a 1-0 lead on Sherwood in the 23rd minute when junior Vincete Santoyo made a penalty kick after getting tackled in the box. The Crimson Tide made it 2-0 in the 59th minute when Santoyo made a run on a pass from Martinez Trejo and got cut off near the goal, only to have freshman Lester Rivas deposit the loose ball inside the near post.

Junior goalkeeper David Downey recorded the shutout by making four saves in the second half, three of them on outstanding plays. The defensive line of senior Rafael Olvera, sophomore David Olvera, junior Angel Garcia Gonzalez and Martinez Trejo kept much of the heat off of Downey.

“Sherwood is a very solid team, very offensively strong,” Stephens said. “David had to step up, and he did. It was arguably his best game of the season. … I have a ton of respect for Sherwood. I knew they were going to come to play. The ball bounced our way.”

Martinez Trejo, the only returning first-team all-conference player, has showed the way for Glencoe. He leads the team in scoring with eight goals and six assists, and switched from midfield to help out on defense after senior center back Aaron Hochstetler suffered a broken ankle Oct. 11 against Forest Grove.

“He's just that good. He can play any position,” Stephens said of Martinez Trejo. “He's the glue that makes the team roll. The guys follow his every step. Unbelievable kid. I couldn't ask for a better leader of the team.”

Glencoe went into the Pacific schedule on a five-game losing streak, four of the losses by one goal. In three of those games, the Crimson Tide gave up the go-ahead in the final 10 minutes -- including a 3-2 home defeat to Lakeridge, ranked No. 1 in the OSAAtoday 6A coaches poll.

The team was able to keep its focus despite the losses.

“Just bringing each other up and not giving up, knowing that there's still multiple games left in the season,” Martinez Trejo said. “Just going in like every game is our last, trying to prove everybody wrong. We have more passion than last year. We're a pretty young team, so it took a while to build some chemistry. But most of all, it's passion.”

Last year, Glencoe advanced to the second round of the 6A playoffs before falling 5-3 at Lakeridge, a loss that has motivated the Crimson Tide.

“It bothers us because we know that we had that game,” Martinez Trejo said. “We want to make a statement this year, so I think we'll use that as fuel to come in stronger and better. I feel like we can play with anybody. We're not scared of anybody.”

Glencoe, currently at No. 25 in the OSAA 6A power rankings, faces a difficult road in the playoffs.

“Because of that tough preseason, and all the losses, we got a bad seed going in,” Stephens said. “We're going on the road and we're playing against a really good team. I know that we won't have to play those top three teams, because they're all playing really good soccer right now.”

Highlights from the past week:


McLoughlin senior Angel Castillo, who became the state's all-time leader in goals this season, collected four goals in his team's 13-0 win at Irrigon on Thursday, raising his career total to 103. Last year, Pleasant Hill's Adrian Arellano took the top spot with 85 career goals. … Lincoln wrapped up the Portland Interscholastic League title Monday with a 3-1 win over Grant, getting goals from Ollie MacLaren, Pablo Guevara and Merlin Danzmayr. … Willamette emerged with the title in the Southwest Conference on Saturday when it tied North Medford 0-0. South Medford, which could have earned a share of the title by beating South Eugene at home Saturday, lost 4-1 to the Axe. … Two league titles are on the line Tuesday when Lakeridge goes to Lake Oswego (Three Rivers League) and South Salem visits McNary (Central Valley Conference). …

Ashland defeated Thurston 3-0 on Saturday to move into a first-place tie in the Midwestern League with Churchill. Cash Cota converted a penalty kick and Ravi Guerrero Cruz and Aiden Espinoza added goals for the Grizzlies, who have two league games remaining. … Stayton clinched a share of the Oregon West title Thursday by stopping Newport 1-0 in a first-place showdown. Ismael Esparza scored for the Eagles. … Cottage Grove secured the Sky-Em League title with a 2-2 at Marist Catholic in the regular-season finale Wednesday. Tristyn Burnes scored the tying goal with 1:21 left after the Spartans had taken the lead with four minutes to go. … Sisters outlasted Creswell 5-4 on Thursday to claim first place in 3A Special District 3. ... 5A La Salle Prep has won eight in a row since a three-game losing streak to 6A teams, outscoring opponents 50-2.


Grant and Lincoln played for the PIL title Monday, with the visiting Generals emerging on top 5-3. The Generals opened a 4-1 lead at half and held off the Cardinals. Abbey Day scored twice for Grant, which got single goals from Paige Nakada, Maggie McGair and Nailani Solomon. Last season, Grant dropped one-goal matches to Lincoln for the league title and in the second round of the 6A playoffs. … Sherwood won at Glencoe 4-0 on Monday to wrap up the Pacific Conference title. Sherwood (5-0-1) finished ahead of Forest Grove (5-1) and Glencoe (3-2-1). … The Mt. Hood Conference title will be decided Tuesday when Barlow (6-0) plays Central Catholic (5-0-1) at Delta Park. …

West Linn won at Lake Oswego 1-0 on Oct. 17, a victory that ultimately gave the Lions (5-0-1) the Three Rivers League title over Lake Oswego (4-1), which finishes the regular season Tuesday at Lakeridge. … North Eugene took over first place in the Midwestern League by beating Thurston 2-1 on Oct. 17. … Corvallis and West Albany remain tied for first place in the Mid-Willamette Conference after tying 0-0 on Thursday. … Summit and Caldera will play for the Intermountain Conference title Wednesday at Caldera. Summit (7-1-1) and Caldera (8-0-1) played to a 0-0 tie at Summit on Oct. 6. …

The Dalles moved ahead of Gladstone and into first place in the Tri-River Conference with a 4-3 home win over the Gladiators on Thursday. But the Indians fell 3-2 at Molalla on Monday, giving Gladstone a chance to earn a share of the conference title with a win at Estacada on Tuesday in the regular-season finale. … Philomath defeated North Marion 6-2 on Oct. 17 to pull even with the Huskies in first place in the Oregon West Conference with one game remaining. North Marion beat Philomath 2-1 in the first round of conference play. … La Grande took sole possession of first place in the Greater Oregon League with a 2-0 win over Ontario on Thursday. …. Reigning 4A champion Marist Catholic (14-0) puts its 30-game winning streak on the line Tuesday when it plays host to 3A/2A/1A power Catlin Gabel (12-1-1).