Thunder Ridge Girls Soccer Beats the Odds


Jayden Barfuss, Staff Writer

The Thunder Ridge Girls Soccer team came into the season projected as last place in the conference, and they beat the odds ending the season in 2nd place and making their first-ever state tournament. They also had the best record in school history with 9 wins 3 draws and 6 losses.

As the Lady Titans started their quest for their first state berth they had a bumpy season, not really stringing together very many wins in a row. But the one thing they were not doing was losing a lot in a row.

The Titans finished the season 4-2-1 beating Idaho Falls, Hillcrest, Rigby, and Madison. They drew with Madison and Skyline, and lost to District Champions Highland who ended 16-0 this seaon. The Titans went into districts at the highest-rated seed they have ever been: #2. They had a bye in the first round and then were scheduled to face the Madison Bobcats.

Due to weather, the game was moved from Thunder to Madison. Just like all bad weather games, it was slow-moving until Senior Forward Sophie Mangum opened the scoring in the 5th minute, and Madison tied the game 1-1. The score was tied at the end of regular play, which pushed the game into overtime.

In overtime, the Titans were still scoreless after the first 10 minutes, but in the last 10 minutes, the Titans dominated, getting their reward as Sophie Mangum from about 25 yards out over the keeper’s head landed a goal and sent the Titans to the district championship game, beating Madison 2-1 in 2ot.

The district championship was not kind to the Titans as they were blown out of the water 4-0 to Highland, setting up their 3rd matchup with Madison in 2 weeks and the winner going to state.

As the Titans battled through the disappointment of their loss to Highland, they realized Madison came to play and were on the front foot until the Titans scored the only goal of the game: Willow Rhoda off of a deflection. This victory sent the Titans to their first-ever state tournament. 

Mangum, the leading scorer on the Titans and in the conference with 14 goals, is so excited to finally be going to state. “I am pretty excited cuz senior year was my last year to go. So yeah, excited!”  

Mangum has also enjoyed her time on this team especially this season her favorite moment was bonding with her teammates; “going to Coeur d’Alene and bonding with my team was fun.”

The Titans beat the odds and made it to their first-ever state tournament, and they will start their quest for a state title against undefeated Highland on Thursday.