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Posts Tagged ‘Providence Classical Christian’

Coupeville’s Alex Murdy is pursued by a pair of Orcas Island players during an early-season game. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

Our league is #1.

Coupeville’s second season of playing boys soccer in the Northwest 2B/1B League ended with a conference rival winning the state title.

Orcas Island topped Providence Classical Christian 2-1 Saturday night in Sumner, with the game decided in a 4-3 shootout.

The victory, coming in an all-NWL final, gives the Viking booters the first team state title in program history, and the second in school history.

Orcas previously won a girls soccer state title in 2009.

This version of Vikings soccer finished 18-2, beating PCC three times in four meetings.

The two teams split games during the regular season, before Orcas came out on top 1-0 in the district tourney title game.

Saturday’s finale was knotted 1-1 at the end of regulation, then went through scoreless overtime to end in that most-beloved, or most-loathed, of events — “kicks from the mark.”

Orcas goalie Paxton White came up huge, deflecting a PCC ball away from his net on the first shot, before watching a second try go wide left.

The Vikings nailed their first three kicks, with Tommy Anderson-Cleveland, William Ibarra, and Diego Lago finding the back of the net, and seemed to be running away with things, up 3-1.

But there was some drama left, as PCC rallied to net back-to-back kicks, while blocking an Orcas try, pushing things to 3-3 headed into the 10th, and potentially final, attempt.

The ball was on Pedro Guerra’s foot, and the Orcas junior was golden, flicking the title-winning shot past a flailing PCC netminder.

That capped the fifth trip to state for the Vikings booters, whose best previous finish was 2nd place in 2018.

The NWL, which has nine teams for boys soccer — picking up outsiders PCC, Grace Academy, Cedar Park Christian-Lynnwood, and Lopez Island — claimed three of four team awards at the 2B/1B state tourney.

Friday Harbor earned 4th place, falling 2-0 to Crosspoint Academy Saturday afternoon.

Overall, NWL schools brought home two team state titles this fall, with La Conner volleyball also winning a third-straight 2B crown.

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Coupeville’s Miguel Puente battles for control of the ball with a Providence Classical Christian player. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

So, you’re saying we have a chance?

Coupeville’s conference, the Northwest 2B/1B League, has a pretty good shot at collecting a second team state title this fall.

The 2B volleyball crown is already in the bag, thanks to La Conner claiming a third-straight championship after going 22-0 this season.

That run included three wins over Coupeville, which finished second in the seven-team NWL.

Now, three of the final four teams standing in the race for the 1B/2B boys soccer title are Wolf league rivals.

Orcas Island, Friday Harbor, and Providence Classical Christian, which joins the NWL for pitch action, are in the state semifinals after wins this weekend.

The only non-NWL team with a shot at the title is Crosspoint, which nipped Mount Vernon Christian 1-0 Saturday in a quarterfinal battle.

Orcas thumped Puget Sound Adventist 5-0, Friday Harbor squeaked by Prescott 3-2, and PCC drilled Upper Columbia Academy 3-0 to get to where they are.

The semifinals, which go down in Sumner next Friday, Nov. 19, pits PCC against Crosspoint, while NWL rivals Orcas and Friday Harbor face off.

The title game and 3rd/4th clash are both the next day.

The Orcas vs Friday Harbor semifinal will be the rubber match in that series, as the teams split during the regular season, with both games decided by a single goal.

The Vikings won the season opener 1-0, before Friday Harbor rebounded for a 2-1 victory midway through the campaign.

If PCC makes it to the championship game, the Highlanders will either face a team they swept (1-0 and 3-0 wins against Friday Harbor) or the only program to hand them a loss this season.

Orcas beat PCC 2-0 early in the season, fell 4-1 to the same team in mid-October, then rebounded to win 1-0 in the district championship game.

Coupeville, which finished sixth among the nine NWL schools to play boys soccer, went a combined 0-6 against the semifinal-bound squads, but came very close to upending Friday Harbor twice.

 

Girls soccer teams done:

It didn’t go quite as well for NWL girls pitch squads, as both Friday Harbor and Mount Vernon Christian were eliminated by the same school.

Toledo nipped the Wolverines 1-0 in the opening round of the 1B/2B state tourney, then pulled together a stunning comeback to eliminate the Hurricanes 3-2 in the quarterfinals.

The Riverhawks trailed 2-0 late in the second half, before rallying to net the game-tying score in stoppage time — that Twilight Zone period where the stadium clock clicks off reading 2:00, and only the ref has a clue of how much time is left.

The eventual game-winner came in the second overtime, eliminating any chance a NWL team would win a girls soccer state title this go-round.

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Xavier Murdy is one of two departing seniors for the CHS soccer squad. (Photos by JohnsPhotos.net)

Tony Garcia is the other 12th grader.

“There were moments of greatness. There were moments of frustration.”

Coupeville High School boys soccer coach Robert Wood could have been talking both about Thursday’s season finale, and the season in whole.

The Wolves fell 5-0 in Bothell to Northwest 2B/1B League frontrunner Providence Classical Christian.

PCC improves to 13-1 with the win, while Coupeville finishes 4-10 and will claim sixth-place among nine teams.

The Wolves, who almost saw the program shut down last season due to a lack of players, rebounded in numbers this season, with 19 booters.

CHS will only lose three — seniors Tony Garcia and Xavier Murdy, as well as exchange student Miguel Puente — but now there’s a need to keep the momentum going.

Wood used his younger players in the second half Thursday, and hopes the experience lights a fire under them.

“Can’t build a competitive team with only nine players at the start of practice/school (like last time),” he warned.

While Coupeville may not boast travel ball players like PCC and other private school teams often do, Wood would like to see a serious commitment from his players going forward.

If everyone returns, things look bright, with five of the seven players who scored this season being underclassmen.

All three goaltenders — Aidan Wilson, Alex Murdy, and Nick Guay — are also due back.

 

Final scoring stats:

Nick Guay 5
Alex Murdy 5
Xavier Murdy 3
Miguel Puente 3
Grant Steller 1
Andrew Williams 1
Cael Wilson 1

Team captain Grant Steller is among the possible returners for next year.

Nick Guay, just a sophomore, tied for the team lead in scoring.

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Cael Wilson and Coupeville High School boys soccer continue to swing big against Northwest 2B/1B League heavyweights. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

Not all losses are the same.

Yes, it’s true the Coupeville High School boys soccer team fell 3-1 to visiting Providence Classical Christian Saturday afternoon at Mickey Clark Field.

The loss, the second-straight for the Wolf booters, drops them to 3-6 in Northwest 2B/1B League play, with six games left to play.

But much like in Coupeville’s 2-1 defeat Thursday against Mount Vernon Christian, the final score up on the big board doesn’t tell the whole story.

Coupeville, which almost lost its boys soccer program last season, played two of the best teams in its league in a 48-hour period, and more than held its own.

Both of the private schools boast a considerable amount of travel ball vets, while the Wolves, who have rebuilt their roster to 19 booters, don’t have that same level of experience.

But what CHS does have is a batch of tough, never-say-die hustlers who are jelling as a team and taking huge leaps and bounds as individuals, and as a group, each time on the pitch.

“Great game today. Awesome play by absolutely everyone!,” said elated Coupeville coach Robert Wood.

Trailing 2-0 to PCC at the half, and playing a team with just a single loss on its record to defending NWL champs Orcas Island, the Wolves rebounded after the break.

Miguel Puente notched his second goal of the season in the game’s 50th minute to pull Coupeville within one.

Nick (Guay), Alex (Murdy), and Xavier (Murdy) all just being tenacious on the back line … then Miguel to clean it up nicely,” Wood said.

PCC showed off their chops with an absolutely-gorgeous goal from 35 yards out, with the ball smacking gracefully into the upper corner of the net, to provide the final margin.

“Rather pro, if you ask me,” Wood said of the final tally.

“All in all … awesome to hold them (a premier-stacked team) at 2-1 until extra time.”

But while the effort was impressive, and the battle intense, the best thing might be that the young, still-developing Wolves exited the field wanting more.

“Kids are pissed though,” Wood said. “Because they know how good they can be.”

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Owen Barenburg played strong defense Thursday, but Coupeville fell 3-1 to Providence Classical Christian. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

Wolf goalie Logan Martin had several strong saves in net. (Morgan White photo)

It was a gentleman’s brawl.

In the end, the more-physical team won Thursday, and, unfortunately that squad was not the one wearing the red and black of Coupeville High School.

Pushed around a bit by visiting Providence Classical Christian, the plucky Wolves put up a good fight, but ultimately fell 3-1 in Northwest 2B/1B League action.

The loss drops Coupeville to 1-2 on the pandemic-shortened season, with two games left on the schedule.

First up is Senior Night Monday, May 3, with Orcas Island coming to Whidbey, before the Wolves cap their campaign with a trip to La Conner May 5.

Still, even after a loss, there was much to be happy about.

Starting with the fact Coupeville was out there on the field playing after being hit by the double whammy of a pandemic and the program being shut down for a week-plus when it seemed there wouldn’t be enough players to field a team.

While Providence controlled the pace of the game, and sent more than a few Wolves crashing down to kiss the grass, Coupeville didn’t go gently into that good night.

Seniors Sam Wynn and Owen Barenburg brought considerable heat to bear on the visiting Highlanders in the backfield, with both Wolf defenders crashing hard to blunt multiple scoring opportunities.

“We NEVER stopped fighting and playing, which is most commendable,” said CHS coach Robert Wood. “Good defense stopped a lot of attacks.

“Very happy with the seniors for controlling the back players and all the attacks.”

PCC, a small 1B school which hails from Bothell, is one of three schools, with Grace Academy and Cedar Park Christian-Lynnwood, which join the NWL for boys soccer.

The Highlanders have the look of year-round pitch warriors, and, give them credit, they took advantage of their opportunities.

After poking a goal into the net in the 7th minute of the game, PCC added two more in the first half to take a 3-0 lead in at the break.

Staying on the attack for much of the first 40 minutes, the Highlanders laced multiple shots in the direction of first-year goaltender Logan Martin, and he made several nice saves, including one in which he sprawled out to snag a madly-curving ball.

Coupeville got a long run from Aidan Wilson, only to have his shot snuffed at the last second by the PCC goalie, but it was the Wolf defenders who had the biggest first-half plays.

On one play, Wynn, going one-on-one with his man in the deep left corner, spun his rival around, pickpocketed the ball, and was gone before the PCC player stopped spinning and fell down with a gentle plop.

The Wolves finally got on the board in the game’s 53rd minute, when Wilson converted on a penalty kick, pasting a booming shot into the top right corner of the net.

The speed-demon sophomore, who leads CHS with three goals this season, had a second PK, but the PCC goalie got an arm on the ball, and knocked it wide of the net.

While the Wolves received two penalty kicks, a person could be forgiven for thinking maybe they deserved more, as there was a fair amount of elbows and knees flying, with players sent sprawling.

The answer, likely, is to toughen up their own style of play.

“Totally bums me out when they let another team bully them,” Wood said. “Obviously we need to work on being strong against bigger players … especially on “free” balls in our own 18-yard box.

“We could play them all year long and beat them every time if we could JUST MOVE TO THE BALL!!!!,” he added. “But when you leave holes in the middle because someone is not doing their job … well … you get punished.”

With a young, resilient Wolf team at his beck and call, Wood and his crew will look to bounce back quickly, however.

“Tomorrow’s a new day … a day of rest before we focus on Orcas.”

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