Falcon kickers keep winning but lose senior striker to injury

"R.J. Erickson gets a head on the ball to set up an offensive drive.Matt Johnson, staff photosThe days following spring break have been a roller coaster ride for the South Whidbey High School boys soccer team.Last Thursday, the team jumped back into action in a road game against Blaine and beat the Borderites 5-1. But they paid a price for the big win when senior striker Kevin Brink went down with a broken foot bone.Without Brink Tuesday night, the Falcons faltered against Mount Baker on the Mountaineers' home turf. Without Brinks' presence on the offense, sophomore Abe Smith-Groening was the only Falcon able to score. He put the Falcons up 1-0 late in the first half on an unassisted goal. Burt early in the second half, Mount Baker's Abe Tolhofer tied the game when he put a shot past Falcon goal keeper Mike Johnson. The tie lasted into overtime, when Tolhofer fielded a long kick from his goalkeeper deep in the South Whidbey zone, then tapped it into the net to give his team the 2-1 victory.Falcon coach Mark Helpenstell said the game - which was played on a small, hard, windy field, did not fit his team's style of play.We tried to play airball, he said.The Falcons came back to earth Thursday when they played Lakewood at Waterman Field. Senior George Supang nailed two penalty kicks in the first half to give his team a 2-0 advantage. In the second half, Smith-Groening put away a third goal on a Supang assist to give the team the 3-0 lead it held to the final buzzer.The Falcons are now 9-2 in the North Cascades League. They trail only 10-0 Lynden Christian in the standings. The team plays next on Monday night when Meridian comes to town. Varsity action starts at 6 p.m. The junior varsity team plays at 4 p.m. "

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