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Preston Epp punched in two goals Tuesday, lifting Coupeville to a win. (Morgan White photo)

They’re still alive.

Bouncing back from a weekend loss, the Coupeville High School boys soccer squad righted the ship, nipping visiting La Conner 2-1 Tuesday night.

The Senior Night victory was huge and lifts the Wolves to 3-4 in Northwest 2B/1B League play, 5-7 overall heading into the regular season finale.

That game arrives Thursday, when CHS travels to Orcas Island to face the defending state champs, who are 6-0 in conference action, 11-1 overall.

Five of the nine schools who play boys soccer in the NWL make it to the playoffs, and Orcas, Mount Vernon Christian, and Friday Harbor have clinched berths, while winless Cedar Park Christian-Lynnwood is DOA.

After that it’s a big mess, with five teams, including Coupeville, vying for the last two slots.

An upset of Orcas would be huge for the Wolves, but, for the moment, they’ll bask in the afterglow of toppling the Braves.

They did so with sophomore Preston Epp rattling home both of his team’s goals, giving him five tallies on the season.

“He was great all night,” said Coupeville coach Robert Wood, who went on to praise the work put in by his entire roster.

“The Wolves FINALLY realize that if you play the game like you practice the game then good things happen,” he said.

“They played amazing – controlling, confident, with purpose in a must-win game.”

While the game was a bit of a nailbiter, Coupeville’s players never cracked under pressure.

“Not without mistakes, but they knew what to do when it happens,” Wood said. “And how to transition the game back in their favor.”

Along with the win, Coupeville used the evening to honor seniors Reiley Araceley, Aidan Wilson, Cameron Epp, and Grant Steller.

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Preston Epp has scored three times this season. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

They’re on a first-name basis with the back of the soccer net.

As we head towards the finish line, 12 different players have scored at least one goal this season for Coupeville High School’s soccer teams.

With a two-goal performance Tuesday against Providence Classical Christian, Wolf senior Aidan Wilson slides ahead of sophomore Ayden Wyman to claim the top rung, though there’s still plenty of games left to play.

Where things sit through Oct. 18:

 

GIRLS:

Ayden Wyman – 7
Carolyn Lhamon – 3
Wynter Arndt – 1

 

BOYS:

Aidan Wilson – 8
Cameron Epp – 3
Preston Epp – 3
Cole White – 3
Reiley Araceley – 2
Nick Guay – 2
Alex Smith – 2
Cael Wilson – 2
Grant Steller – 1

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Alex Smith scored twice Saturday in a Coupeville win. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

“Very┬ápleased with the way we played today.”

Coupeville High School boys soccer coach Robert Wood put some extra emphasis on the first word in that statement after his team bamboozled visiting Cedar Park Christian-Lynnwood Saturday afternoon.

Kicking off the front end of a pitch doubleheader, with the Wolf girls playing in the nightcap against Ocosta, the CHS boys rolled to a 7-0 victory.

The win lifts Coupeville to 1-1 on the season, with both games coming against Northwest 2B/1B League rivals.

The Wolves hit the road early next week, traveling to La Conner Tuesday, Sept. 20, before hosting their next two games.

The first of those home tilts will be a Friday special, with kickoff at 4 PM and admission free.

Playing on their own field Saturday afternoon, the Wolves dominated from start to finish.

“Mixing up the formation and player positions does wonders,” Wood said. “Everyone executed the game plan as we talked about – quick deliberate passing with pace and accuracy.

“Off-ball movement to support the ball; three touches max before distribution; aggression and determination to get the ball first; confident defending as a team.”

Coupeville spread its scoring out, with four different players beating the CPC goaltender.

Cameron Epp opened the assault on the net, rifling home a penalty kick in the game’s 10th minute, and then then the rout was on.

Reiley Araceley, Alex Smith, and Preston Epp each scored twice to round out the offense, with all four players netting their first high school varsity goal on the same day.

With four more sharpshooters etching their names in the scorebooks, 67 Wolves have scored for the CHS boys soccer program, which began in 2004.

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Carolyn Lhamon launches. (Photos by JohnsPhotos.net)

Back to the pitch.

There are no games Wednesday, but plenty of photos as we take a look at Coupeville High School soccer players in action.

The pics above and below are courtesy wanderin’ photo clicker John Fisken.

To see more of his work, and possibly buy some glossies for the in-laws living down in wine country in Temecula, pop over to:

https://www.johnsphotos.net/Sports/Coupeville-soccer-2020-2021

 

Preston Epp tangoes.

Sophie Martin pursues.

Aidan Wilson bids farewell.

Leni Raduenz pushes the action.

Alex Murdy contemplates his choices.

Audrianna Shaw fires away.

Cael Wilson gets bendy.

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Freshman Preston Epp played strongly Thursday as Coupeville and Mount Vernon Christian waged a classic battle. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

A loss on the scoreboard, a win in their hearts.

While they couldn’t get the tying goal across despite a frenzied late-game push Thursday, the Coupeville High School boys soccer players have nothing to hang their heads about.

Facing off with one of the best teams in the Northwest 2B/1B League in visiting Mount Vernon Christian, the still-developing Wolves pushed the Hurricanes hard in a 2-1 loss.

The game was a thriller, with fans from both schools screaming into the encroaching fog, and a chiller, as the two teams played a hard-nosed, physical, but not dirty affair.

Now, there was a moment or two when Coupeville PA announcer Ja’Kenya Hoskins came out of her chair, ready to drop fists to defend her boys down below.

Especially when Wolf freshman Preston Epp and his MVC counterpart tangled with elbows and other assorted body parts while frequently fighting for control of the ball down in front of the press box.

“No sir, I am not having it #9! Do not make me come down there!!,” blurted Hoskins, who then reverted to form as the friendliest person on the prairie, dissolving into giggles.

“I’ve never been so into a soccer game before!,” she added. “This is a good one!!”

It was a sentiment shared by Coupeville coach Robert Wood.

“Such a good game,” he said with a big smile. “Well played by both teams, and I’m really proud of our guys and how they played.”

With the loss, Coupeville drops to 3-4 in Northwest 2B/1B League play, snapping a two-game win streak, while MVC gets to 6-3.

The Hurricane program has always been a strong one, and Wood was pleased to see the growth in his Wolf squad, which lost 4-0 to MVC back in the season opener.

He credited players like Xavier Murdy, Miguel Puente, and Grant Steller for their hustle, their grit, and their leadership, while praising everyone on the field for their contributions.

Coupeville got on the board first, moments after Wolf goalie Aidan Wilson made a superb kick save on a shot.

Rumbling in front of the net, the ever-electric Alex Murdy torched the MVC netminder, slashing the ball past him in the game’s 13th minute.

It was the team-high fourth goal of the season for the younger of the Murdy boys, and it held up until the 27th minute.

Caught in a scramble of players, Wilson was partially blocked, allowing the Hurricanes to punch in a loose ball and knot things up at 1-1.

From there, the CHS defense clamped down, with Wilson making another nifty save, this one on a Mount Vernon header, and the teams headed into the break still stuck in a stalemate.

The second half was the story of one quick goal — MVC popped in the eventual game-winner a little over two minutes after play resumed — and then 37+ minutes of rough-and-tumble, back-and-forth scoreless action.

Coupeville had a couple of really good looks after halftime, with Xavier Murdy just missing on a free kick and Puente being thwarted on a breakaway by the goalie colliding with him mid-shot.

The game’s oddest moment, which drew a roar of joy from Hoskins in the booth, came when an MVC player was handed a yellow card by the lone ref on the scene.

It wasn’t for any of the many in-game collisions or jostling, however, but apparently for the Hurricane taunting by dropping and doing pushups after a play.

“Weird, man,” Wood said with a laugh, and then he vanished into the night, a coach pleased with how his team is growing closer, both on and off the field.

Wins are important, but growth tops all.

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