MILESTONE MOMENT -- Harlan Community junior Kelli Christensen (23) celebrates scoring her first career goal with Kylee Hinz during Wednesday’s Class 1A regional soccer game at Merrill Field. Christensen’s goal broke a scoreless tie late in the first half and set the stage for a 4-0 Cyclone victory. (Photos by Mike Oeffner) Cyclone sophomore Dani Arkfeld (11) sends a shot toward the goal. HCHS junior Alex Defenbaugh (7) gets in front of a Riverside goal kick during Wednesday’s regional win.

Cyclone girls blank Riverside in regional soccer

Second straight victory sets up Class 1A, Region 3 semifinal at Des Moines Christian

 HARLAN (May 30) -- Junior Kelli Christensen’s first varsity goal provided an uplifting finish to a frustrating first half and sparked Harlan Community to a 4-0 win over Riverside in Wednesday’s Class 1A girls soccer regional quarterfinal at Merrill Field.
 HCHS added three goals in the final 20 minutes to pull away, winning its second straight game and improving to 3-14 on the season. The Cyclones will now play at 15th-ranked Des Moines Christian (14-2) in a Region 3 semifinal Friday at 6:00 p.m.
 Delayed 24 hours due to thunderstorms Tuesday, the game was dominated by the Cyclones from a possession standpoint, particularly in the first 20 minutes. HCHS kicked a number of early shots directly at Riverside goalie Rhyan Sanny, who made several nice saves, and Christensen’s rebound shot in the 14th minute deflected off the right post.
 The Bulldogs didn’t take their first shot on goal until the 23rd minute but were beginning to win more balls when Christensen delivered a key goal with just 1:31 left in the half.
 After failing to capitalize on several more one-on-one chances early in the second half, the Cyclones went up 2-0 with 19:49 left when Alicia Dominguez was fouled inside the 18-yard box and converted the resulting penalty kick for her second goal of the year. It was the team’s first successful PK of the season in five attempts.
 Following a couple more close calls, HCHS finally pulled away late as senior Kylee Hinz converted a pair of breakaway goals at the 10:07 and 6:41 marks, respectively.
 Riverside finished with a record of 2-12.

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