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After scoring 24 goals, CHS sophomore Derek Leyva was named the Olympic League boys soccer MVP. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

Their final season in the Olympic League was a major success.

After three years of garnering third-place finishes, the Coupeville High School boys soccer squad surged to second-place in 2018, then made its longest playoff run in a decade.

CHS bounced five-time state champ Bellevue Christian from the postseason, then pushed Vashon Island and Klahowya hard in playoff losses.

With a solid core of young players (its top two scorers are only sophomores), the Wolves are primed for future success as they head to the new North Sound Conference next year.

And one of those sophomores, Derek Leyva, is still making headlines after being selected Olympic League MVP.

It’s the first time a non-Klahowya player was honored as the top boys soccer player in the four years of the conference.

Making his debut in 2018 with CHS, Leyva scorched the nets for 24 goals, a single-season record for the Wolf boys program.

He shattered the previous mark of 20, set by cousin Abraham Leyva in 2016.

Also pulling down big honors from league coaches were senior William Nelson and sophomore Aram Leyva, who were tabbed as First-Team All-Conference players.

It was Nelson’s fourth time to receive the honor.

Those awards, and team honors, letters and certificates, were handed out Thursday night as the booters kicked off Coupeville’s spring sports banquet circuit.

Derek Leyva was also named the team’s Player of the Year, while Uriah Kastner (Most Improved), Nelson (Most Inspirational) and Sam Wynn (Rookie of the Year) received varsity awards.

JV players Dawson Houston (Most Inspirational) and Ben Smith (Most Improved) were honored, as well.

“This was a great season for us with plenty of records and firsts in quite a few years,” said Coupeville coach Kyle Nelson.

Varsity letter-winners:

Chris Cernick
Dewitt Cole
Hunter Downes
Sage Downes
Pedro Gamarra
Uriah Kastner
Teo Keilwitz
Aram Leyva
Derek Leyva
William Nelson (4-year letter winner)
Axel Partida
Josh Robinson
Ethan Spark (4-year letter winner)
James Wood
Sam Wynn

JV certificates:

Zach Ginnings
Dawson Houston
Alex Jimenez
Jonathan Partida
Ben Smith
Simon Socha

Manager:

Peytin Vondrak

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Jenna Dickson leads off our collection of spring sports portraits. (Photos by JohnsPhotos.net)

Zach Ginnings

Alex Jimenez

James Vidoni

Mason Grove

Dawson Houston

Ben Smith

Ivy Leedy

Time for a little spring cleaning.

As the season winds down, I’m going through head shots snapped by John Fisken and trying to make sure 99.3% of them get used.

The eight above, covering softball, baseball and boys soccer, are ones that, for whatever reason, had yet to see the light of day.

Before you ask, there are no tennis pics because it’s a smaller team and I already used all their head shots.

And track? It’s a bigger team and no one snapped head shots, so I can’t use something I never had.

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   Former All-Conference player Luke Pelant joined the CHS soccer coaching staff this year, helping the Wolves make their longest playoff run since 2010. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

The 11th time was not the charm.

Squaring off with Olympic League rival Klahowya Thursday night in Silverdale, the Coupeville High School boys soccer squad experienced a good case of deja vu.

Falling 3-0 to the host Eagles, the Wolves were knocked out of the West Central District 3 playoffs and likely ended their relationship with a school they could not beat on the pitch.

After making their deepest run into the postseason in almost a decade, the Coupeville booters finished 7-9-2.

A win over five-time state champ Bellevue Christian kicked things off, then losses to Vashon Island and KSS ended things.

Now CHS jumps to the new North Sound Conference, and returns to District 1, this fall.

Klahowya (14-3-1), which never lost to a fellow 1A Olympic League team in four years, advances to play either Vashon Island or Charles Wright Academy Saturday in a winner-to-state, loser-goes-home game.

The Eagles scored early Thursday, when Pacific Lutheran University recruit Mason Joe hauled in a long ball and poked it into the back of the net.

A second goal came in the 22nd minute, when Josh Connolly’s corner kick found the perfect angle and deflected in off of Coupeville goaltender Dewitt Cole’s outstretched hands.

The Wolves played aggressively in the second half, hoping to emulate their late-game heroics against Vashon, but it wasn’t to be.

The game’s final score, a tap-in off of a cross, came courtesy William Stewart.

“It was a fairly close game,” said Coupeville coach Kyle Nelson. “They made us pay for a couple of mistakes and were able to keep us at bay, though we did have a few pretty good shots.

“They definitely put some attention on their defense to keep us out,” he added. “Overall, a good game for us; we were in it until the very end.”

While the loss ended the season, and the careers of seniors Hunter Downes, Axel Partida, Ethan Spark and William Nelson, this postseason was the best for Wolf boys soccer in quite some time.

The last playoff win for CHS came in 2012, and the three games was the most Coupeville had played in one postseason since they won four of six playoff games during a run to the state tourney in 2010.

The Wolves also busted two single-season goal scoring records, with sophomore Derek Leyva toppling cousin Abraham’s mark for a player (21 goals), and the team tallying a program-best 66 scores.

Those who found the net in 2018:

Derek Leyva – 24
Aram Leyva – 13
William Nelson – 8
Sam Wynn – 5
Hunter Downes – 3
Sage Downes – 3
Pedro Gamarra – 3
Ethan Spark – 2
James Wood – 2
Chris Cernick – 1
Jonathan Partida – 1
“Own” goal by other team – 1

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   After a loss to Vashon Tuesday, Coupeville High School soccer coach Kyle Nelson and his players have their backs to the wall. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

Time to dig deep and find a miracle.

After absorbing an 8-4 loss to Vashon Island Tuesday, the Coupeville High School boys soccer squad finds itself in a tough spot.

The district playoff loss, which came on a neutral field at Mt. Tahoma High School, drops the Wolves to 7-8-2.

It also drops them into a loser-out game Thursday, one which presents a daunting task.

CHS has to travel 96 miles (one-way) to Orting High School, doesn’t play until 8 PM and faces Klahowya, a team the Wolf booters have never beaten in 10 previous games.

The Eagles are in the loser-out game because they were nipped Tuesday in a penalty kick shootout after ending regulation and overtime tied 3-3 with Charles Wright Academy.

Vashon and CWA play in the front-end of a doubleheader at Orting Thursday, with the winner advancing to state.

The loser of that game returns to Orting Saturday to face the survivor of the Thursday late game in a battle for District 3’s second slot to state.

For it to be Coupeville, the Wolves will have to do something no 1A Olympic League team has done in four years, upend Klahowya, which is 13-4-1 this year.

KSS has outscored CHS 47-5 over their 10 meetings, though the Wolves played the Eagles almost to a standstill in a 3-2 loss this season.

The Wolves fell behind early against Vashon, surrendering a pair of goals in the early moments of the game and trailing 6-1 at the half.

Sophomore Aram Leyva got Coupeville on the board with his 13th goal of the season, off an assist from William Nelson, and the Wolves were much sharper offensively after the break.

“We had a good halftime talk and came to life in the second half,” said CHS coach Kyle Nelson.

CHS “won” that 40-minute span 3-2, with Derek Leyva adding to his Wolf boys single-season scoring record.

He punched in a hat trick in one half, with his three goals lifting him to 24 on the year. That leaves him just shy of the school record of 27, set by Mia Littlejohn.

 

UPDATE: Game moved from 8 PM at Orting High School to 5 PM at Silverdale Stadium. Moves saves Coupeville 86 miles of round-trip bus travel.

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   After beating Bellevue Christian, Uriah Kastner and Coupeville soccer are two wins from advancing to state. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

It’s been awhile.

The Coupeville High School boys soccer squad had some playoff success in the past, including a couple of trips to the state tourney.

But most of the current Wolves were still in elementary school the last time CHS won a playoff game on the pitch.

So, having knocked off five-time state champ Bellevue Christian 3-0 Saturday, notching their first postseason win since 2012, this group of players is entering uncharted waters.

The double-elimination portion of districts kicks off Tuesday, with Coupeville traveling to Mt. Tahoma High School to face Vashon Island.

Win or lose, they’ll play again Thursday, against either Klahowya or Charles Wright Academy.

As you count down the hours, here’s a look at what you need to know.

 

The bracket:

http://www.olympicleague.com/tournament.php?tournament_id=2658&sport=9

 

Admission prices:

Adults and students w/o ASB — $8
Students (with ASB) — $5
Elementary (under 12) — $4
Senior citizens (62+) — $5
Preschool (with parent) — free

 

Team capsules:

 

COUPEVILLE

Season record: 7-7-2

League finish: #2 in Olympic League

Goal differential: 62-43

Record against district foes: 0-4 (lost to Vashon, 0-3 vs Klahowya)

Coach: Kyle Nelson

Mascot: Wolves

Last trip to state tourney: 2010

Best finish at state tourney: Eliminated in first round (2009, 2010)

 

CHARLES WRIGHT ACADEMY

Season record: 8-1-1

League finish: #2 in Nisqually League

Goal differential: 57-7

Record against district foes: 0-1-1 (all vs Vashon)

Coach: Bill Chissoe

Mascot: Tarriers

Last trip to state tourney: 2017

Best finish at state tourney: State champs (1988, 2002)

 

KLAHOWYA

Season record: 13-2-1

League finish: #1 in Olympic League

Goal differential: 59-12

Record against district foes: 3-0-1 (tied Vashon, 3-0 vs Coupeville)

Coach: Jeff Quinn

Mascot: Eagles

Last trip to state tourney: 2016

Best finish at state tourney: 4th place (2015)

 

VASHON ISLAND

Season record: 12-1-3

League finish: #1 in Nisqually League

Goal differential: 85-13

Record against district foes: 2-0-2 (beat Coupeville, tied Klahowya, beat and tied CWA)

Coach: Ben Bork

Mascot: Pirates

Last trip to state tourney: 2012

Best finish at state tourney: 3rd place (1988)

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