10/16/2013 3:54:00 PM Regional final up next for Warriors
Rice Lake’s Zach Buchli leaps while clearing pass Thursday against Chippewa Falls.
The Rice Lake Warriors have advanced in WIAA Division 3 regional soccer with Tuesday's 10-0 home win over Arcadia/Independence. Tuesday's regional opener matched the No. 3-seeded Warriors against the No. 6-seed Arcadia/Independence co-op team. Rice Lake, 10-9-1 overall, plays at Somerset in Thursday's regional final, with the winner going to the sectional semifinal game the following Thursday, Oct. 24. Somerset, a No. 2 seed, opened tourney play Tuesday with a 7-2 win over Osceola. No. 1-seeded West Salem rolled over Hayward, 10-0. If West Salem wins its next game, vs. Amery, the winner of Rice Lake vs. Somerset would play in the sectional semifinal at West Salem. Rice Lake played at Somerset (16-3-1) in a scrimmage earlier this month. Somerset led the scoring in that scrimmage, 5-1. The Warriors have since prepared for stopping the Spartans' top two forwards, Jon Bucklew, a 40-goal scorer, and Gavin Meader, a 38-goal scorer, said Warriors coach Shawn Gilbert. "We've been working on different formations leading up to this game," said Gilbert. Ben Holmes put Rice Lake on the board 8 minutes into Tuesday's regional opener on an assist from Joe Thurston. Also scoring in a six-goal first half were Austin Moullette twice, Shawn Gilbert Jr., Jordan Fader and Hunter Holmes. The Warriors opened the second half with four passes off the kick-off for a goal by Moullette only 14 seconds into the half. Hunter Holmes had one of his two assists on the play. Wrapping up the scoring were Ben Holmes, Hunter Holmes and Fader. Besides Thurston and Hunter Holmes, also picking up assists were Fader, Moullette and Andrew Vrieze. "It was great to see so much scoring from so many different players. The boys played through the cold and rainy conditions well," said Warriors coach Shawn Gilbert. Senior Joey Utt was in goal for the shutout, seeing only two shots. Rice Lake ended its Big Rivers Conference season last Thursday with a 3-0 home loss to Chippewa Falls. John Carli put the Cardinals up 1-0 just before halftime on an assist from Brian Crocker. Early in the second half, Chippewa Falls went up 2-0 on a goal from Jared Ewings, and Carli scored his team's third goal at the 55th minute. Chippewa Falls goalie Dan Oliver made four saves in his shutout. Rice Lake goalie Tony Tangwall had five saves. "The shots were about even, but they had a large advantage with quality shots. It wasn't our best game on the defensive end," said coach Gilbert. Chippewa Falls, in second place in the Big Rivers, hiked its conference mark to 6-3-2. Rice Lake finishes Big Rivers play at 2-9-1.