McNary seniors Alex Pineda, front, left, Jose Abundiz, Bryan Keo, Gustavo Villalvazo, Junio Del Moral Javier Zepeda, Ramon Duenas, Jose Vazquez, Parker Dean, Kanta Ohyama, Aidan Garcia and Damian Camarena won their final home game. (KEIZERTIMES/Derek Wiley)

McNary seniors Alex Pineda, front, left, Jose Abundiz, Bryan Keo, Gustavo Villalvazo, Junio Del Moral Javier Zepeda, Ramon Duenas, Jose Vazquez, Parker Dean, Kanta Ohyama, Aidan Garcia and Damian Camarena won their final home game. (KEIZERTIMES/Derek Wiley)

By DEREK WILEY
Of the Keizertimes

McNary’s seven seniors in uniform were determined to win their final home game.

Switching to a 3-5-2 formation, the Celtics scored three goals in the first 20 minutes on their way to a 4-1 victory over North Salem on Tuesday, Oct. 18.

McNary’s first two goals came from seniors.

In the eighth minute, Kanta Ohyama got the Celtics on the board with a shot from at least 20 yards away that flew over the goalkeeper’s head and into the back of the net.

Senior Jose Vasquez then finished a corner kick from senior Bryan Keo in the 11th minute to put McNary up 2-0.

“I was actually pretty sad because I’ve been playing here for the past four years but it was great to end our last home game on senior night with a win,” Keo said.

Freshmen Luis Lopez had a part in the Celtics final two goals, scoring in the 19th minute and then assisting junior Bhavdeep Bains with only 47 seconds remaining in the first half.

“I was really nervous,” senior Gustavo Villalvazo said of playing his final home game. “Obviously as the last game, you don’t want it to happen. We’ve got to let the youth come in and do their thing as well. We all believe in each other. Every practice we go 100 percent. We give it our all and these guys aren’t going to give up. They did everything for us to win tonight.”

Sophomore Sebastian Lopez had a shutout until North Salem scored its only goal with 9:18 remaining in the game. Junior Hunter Miller then entered and had two saves to hold off the Vikings.

Senior night isn’t easy for head coach Miguel Camarena, who hugged each parent as the seniors were honored at halftime.

“This is not just soccer,” Camarena said. “You see the kids everyday in the school. For me to see these kids, ready to graduate and playing the game that changed their lives, it’s something special. We won the (Greater Valley Conference) championship two years ago with them as sophomores. They have put the bar pretty high.”

McNary’s future is also bright.

In a 3-0 win over Central on Friday, Oct. 14, sophomore Q Gamble and freshman Jack Baez scored. Villalvazo had the third goal.

With the two wins, the Celtics improved to 5-5-3 overall and 29th in the OSAA power rankings.

MHS girls

Playing on the road, the Lady Celts also topped North Salem on Tuesday, winning 3-0.

All three of McNary’s goals came in the second half.

Senior Kayla Evans scored from outside the box in the lower left corner in the 55th minute and then again in the upper right corner in the 61st minute.

The Lady Celts final goal came in the 71st minute when freshman Julie Dieker earned a penalty kick, which senior Isabella Heath converted.

With the win, McNary improved to 7-4-2 and jumped to 33rd in the OSAA rankings.