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Posts Tagged ‘Xavier Murdy’

Sam Wynn leads off a last collection of Wolf boys soccer pics. (Photos by JohnsPhotos.net)

The games almost always end before the photos do.

While the Coupeville High School boys soccer squad wrapped up its pandemic-shortened campaign Saturday, I still have a pile of pics to get out to the world at large.

So, here you go — an assortment of Wolf booters in glossy color, courtesy wanderin’ photo bug John Fisken.

Robert Wood

Jesse Wooten

Ryan Blouin

Cameron Epp

Reese Cernick

Xavier Murdy

Aidan Wilson

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Aidan Wilson assisted on Coupeville’s goal Tuesday afternoon. (Photos by JohnsPhotos.net)

That score hit the back of the net after coming off Xavier Murdy’s foot.

Both teams got a bit lucky.

For the Coupeville High School boys soccer squad, just getting back on the pitch Tuesday was a win in itself, as the Wolves had a 10-day gap between games due to other schools cancelling.

For their opponents, Mount Vernon Christian, the luck showed up on the scoreboard, as a couple of perfect bounces on busted plays sent the hometown Hurricanes to a 3-1 win.

The loss drops Coupeville to 1-1 during this pandemic-shortened season, but its next two games should arrive a lot sooner, and both will be at home.

The Wolves host Providence Classical Christian Thursday (kickoff is 6 PM), then welcome Orcas Island to Whidbey May 3.

The latter of those games will be Senior Night for Coupeville.

Tuesday afternoon, the Wolves didn’t show any rust, coming off the bus with legs already swinging.

Sam Wynn and Owen Barenburg were “hammering balls everywhere” according to CHS coach Robert Wood, and Coupeville got on the board first.

The score came at the 10-minute mark of the first half, with Aidan Wilson delivering a crisp center cross to Xavier Murdy, who promptly blasted the ball into the back of the waiting net.

It was the second goal of the season for X-Man, tying him with Wilson for the team lead in scoring, and the third of his prep career.

Mount Vernon Christian countered with a goal mere seconds before halftime, getting “a lucky deflection” to knot things up headed into the break.

The Hurricanes then took advantage of several second-half penalty kicks to surge ahead and stay ahead.

The game-busting goal actually came off of a second-shot chance after Wolf goalie Logan Martin blocked the penalty kick, before MVC salted the lead away with a late-game penalty kick which found its way into the net.

Still, the young Wolves, who were facing a Hurricane squad which is “a premier team, with quality players,” had nothing to hang their heads about.

The final score wasn’t in their favor, but the improvement they showed on the pitch certainly was.

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Cole White gets his head into the game. (Photos by JohnsPhotos.net)

The program which can’t be killed got its moment in the spotlight.

Back on the pitch Friday night, the Coupeville High School boys soccer squad romped to a 3-0 win over visiting Cedar Park Christian-Lynnwood, and got their closeup thanks to wanderin’ photo whiz kid John Fisken.

The pics above and below are courtesy him, but you can see many more (and buy some gifts for the grandparents) by popping over to:

BS 2021-04-16 vs CPC Lynnwood – John’s Photos

 

Andrew Williams slices a shot into the great wide open.

Aidan Wilson (center) is mobbed by his teammates after netting the first goal of the season.

Cael Wilson launches a laser.

Nathan Ginnings lets rip with a throw-in.

Preston Epp gets the offense out and running.

Owen Barenburg dances a tart tango with the ball.

A perfect 1-0 on the season, and looking for more.

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Xavier Murdy, seen here in 2019, returned to the pitch Friday, scoring in a season-opening 3-0 win for Coupeville. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

Just getting on the field was a win.

From a program seemingly dead in the water, to one which swept to a victory in front of its home fans, all in two weeks — welcome to the ever-evolving saga of Coupeville High School boys soccer.

Jump back to April 2, and the news was dark and depressing.

Unable to field a full roster, the Wolf booters were shut down before they could play their first game for new coach Robert Wood.

But fate held plenty of twists and turns, as a Covid outbreak forced Friday Harbor to cancel all fall sports … which eliminated boys tennis … which sent a handful of Wolf players to soccer.

Toss in a couple of 8th graders — allowed when a 2B school is struggling to field a full team — and Coupeville soccer was reborn.

Which brings us to Friday, opening night, a little later than first expected, but welcomed by all.

Unleashed on the pitch under a fairly-blazing sun, the Wolves rode the hot shooting touch of Aidan Wilson and Xavier Murdy to a 3-0 win over visiting Cedar Park Christian-Lynnwood.

Sitting at 1-0 in Northwest 2B/1B League play, with five games left in a pandemic-shortened season, Coupeville hits the road for its next two games, playing at Grace Academy and Mount Vernon Christian.

As he heads into the weekend, Wood, an easy-going soccer sage, was a man basking in the afterglow of victory, while realizing it is just a small piece of the puzzle.

“VERY happy with the play we showed today as a TEAM,” he said. “Wins are fine … losses are fine … but I’m watching how we PLAY, because wins/losses come and go, but the recovery from one to the other is what a TEAM and a season are about.”

Getting that first W against a private school from the heart of elite soccer was extra-nice, however.

“Tough opponent from off-Island in the middle of the Rush Select Soccer recruiting area, so the results tonight are wonderful, and a huge confidence booster for the team,” Wood said.

Coupeville struck first, and last, but didn’t make the scoreboard jump until late in the first half.

After 28 minutes of the two teams slugging it out, with neither able to break through the opposing team’s defense, the Wolves got a break when they were awarded a penalty kick.

Wilson, a standout distance runner who was making his CHS soccer debut after his freshman season was erased by the pandemic last spring, ambled to the ball, then struck like a coiled snake.

Punching the ball to the corner of the net, he made the CPC goalie look slow, and set off the first, but not last, celebration of the night.

Not content to stay with a single score, Wilson struck again five minutes later, slapping a back-breaker of a second goal to pad the lead.

With Coupeville’s defense playing rough ‘n ready, and goalie Logan Martin in lockdown mode behind them, CPC didn’t have a chance to play catch-up.

But, just to make sure, Murdy broke free late in the game, angling a ball past the diving goaltender to record his first goal of the season, and second of his prep career.

Like most coaches, Wood enjoyed the high points, while also seeing the areas he wants his players to improve.

“So very much we still need to work on,” he said with a chuckle. “But just being a team again is wonderful, and we wouldn’t be here without the desire of the kids to continue the sport.

“I support them in ANY sport they play, any, not just the beautiful game, but having a TEAM right now makes it so beautiful.”

The rebuilt roster boasts a lot of youth, with just two seniors in Owen Barenburg and Sam Wynn.

Toss in juniors Martin and Murdy, and 10 of the 14 Wolves are sophomores or younger.

Cameron Epp, Aidan Wilson, and Jesse Wooten rep the 10th grade class, with freshmen Cole White, Ryan Blouin, Nathan Ginnings, Nick Guay, and Andrew Williams joined by 8th graders Cael Wilson and Preston Epp.

“It’s an amazing rollercoaster of emotion,” Wood said. “Having to tell your players “we don’t have a team,” then recalling them five days later based on a rumor, then forming, storming, and norming, and winning our first competition against an unknown opponent.

“Very happy with the results, but I’m most happy about our team and the way we played together.

“What comes next? Time to study, practice the basics, work on our weaknesses, solidify and expand our strengths.”

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Coupeville senior Daniel Olson closed out his high school baseball career Saturday by getting the final out in a 30-0 win. (Morgan White photos)

First, a small round of applause for Ivory Souryavong.

You probably don’t know him. I had never heard of him before Saturday.

But, as a major rebuilding season ended for a painfully-young La Conner High School baseball squad, Souryavong provided the lone highlight for Brave fans.

La Conner fell at home, and fell hard, losing 30-0 to a confident, really-starting-to-jell Coupeville squad.

The Braves sent 16 hitters to the plate in the loss, with 13 striking out against Wolf hurlers Hawthorne Wolfe, Xavier Murdy, and Daniel Olson.

Two others grounded out.

But Souryavong, a freshman third-baseman, rapped a two-out single in the bottom of the third, providing La Conner’s lone base runner.

It’s a small thing, but it should be noted — a kid refusing to go down easy even when things are not so great.

So, some kudos to Souryavong, before we move on to extolling the virtues of his foes.

And those Coupeville diamond men were in fine form, closing this pandemic-shortened season at 7-3, second-best in the Northwest 2B/1B League.

Cole White is one of six Wolf freshmen on a 16-man roster.

First-year coach Will Thayer, with a pretty young roster of his own, got the best out of his diverse team, and loses just one senior to graduation.

That’s Olson, who once upon a time was my “assistant manager” at David’s DVD Den when he was a preschooler.

He was paid in candy, and I’m still not sure all the customer’s money made it into the till…

Now all grown up (at least mostly), he scored four times Saturday, and came to the mound to get the final out of the game, the season, and his prep career.

Olson ended things with another strikeout, punching out La Conner’s lone senior, Alden Schnabel, then strolled into the twilight.

For a moment at least, as the lanky Wolf is likely to return for basketball season.

After netting just a lone run in the top of the first, Coupeville dropped a 10-spot in the second, then tacked on 15 more in the third, before coasting home with four in the fourth.

With so many runs flying across the plate, the scorebook doesn’t show how a lot of Wolf hitters got on base, and I was in Freeland, helping my sister with chicken coops, and not camped out in La Conner.

So, if you were hoping for a complete breakdown of the hit parade, this is not the story you seek.

But suffice it to say that Thayer was able to get all 16 of his players into the game, with his young guns getting plenty of playing time.

“Super proud of this team,” said the CHS coach. “And excited to start building towards next season.”

After a strong junior campaign, Cody Roberts is primed to be Coupeville’s #1 pitcher when next season rolls around.

Wolfe and Murdy were pitching for the first time in a game this season, while Jonathan Valenzuela paced the offense, scoring five times.

Olson and Scott Hilborn both tapped the plate four times apiece, as well, with Cody Roberts coming around three times.

Also seeing playing time in the finale were Gabe Reed, Miles Davidson, Cole White, Sage Sharp, Zane Oldenstadt, Andrew Williams, Nick Guay, Coen Killian, Peyton Caveness, and Seth Woollet.

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