SPRINGFIELD — To the extent that it's possible to dominate an overtime game, top-seeded Southern Oregon kept eighth-seeded The College of Idaho under its command Friday afternoon in the quarterfinal round of the Cascade Conference Championships presented by U.S. Bank.
Finally, with steady rain falling at the Willamalane Sports Complex, the Raiders got the goal they needed for a 1-0 victory in the 91st minute as Zac Hansen headed in Esteban Castaneda's cross just 44 seconds into the first overtime period.
Hansen's golden goal put the Raiders (12-6-1 overall) in today's 4 p.m. semifinals. All four higher seeds won their opening games, putting the Raiders in a matchup with fourth-seeded tourney host Northwest Christian. The Beacons were 2-0 winners against Oregon Tech.
SOU's nation-leading shutout total swelled to 11. The Raiders have held seven opponents scoreless during an eight-game unbeaten streak, but the Yotes (9-9) were the first opponent this year — and the first in 32 games dating back to last season — who failed to put a single shot on goal.
SOU accumulated an 18-7 advantage in total shots, and Yotes keeper Grant Billings saved the first five shots on goal he faced. C of I put a minor scare in the Raiders with eight seconds left in regulation when Bekir Cinac took a corner kick, but the resulting shot by Lucas Schlake was blocked and sent out of the box.
Hansen, a sophomore defender from Sacramento, has scored a goal in three of SOU's last four games — all on headers — with a pair of game-winners. Prior to this stretch, he went his his first 30 collegiate appearances without recording a point.
Castaneda's assist was his first of the season, and, with five goals, he's now tied for the team lead in points.
The postseason win was the first ever for the Raiders, who were eliminated in penalty kicks by Carroll (Mont.) in last year's quarterfinals. They also defeated C of I during the regular season, 2-1, on Sept. 17 in Caldwell.
At Springfield, fourth-seeded Corban won a shootout 3-2 to defeat fifth-seeded Southern Oregon 2-1 in the quarterfinals of the Cascade Conference tournament on Friday.
Corban advances to play Northwest in the semifinals today.