Wildcats topple Falcons from top spot in conference

Kelsey Kimmel prepares to slam in one of her two goals against the Cougars — Karissa Thomas had the third in the 3-0 victory. - Jeff VanDerford
Kelsey Kimmel prepares to slam in one of her two goals against the Cougars — Karissa Thomas had the third in the 3-0 victory.
— image credit: Jeff VanDerford

Unbeaten in seven games, the South Whidbey girl’s soccer team had maintained a slim lead in the Cascade Conference (2-0 league, 7-0 overall) including a 3-0 shutout of Lakewood on Tuesday at home.

Until Thursday night.

On wet, windswept Kasch Park field in South Everett, Archbishop Murphy toppled the Falcons 1-0, the only score by Wildcat Aleigh Mansfield with less than two minutes left.

Falcon keeper Amelia Cave had her own praise for the South Whidbey defense.

“We played strong the entire game; Aleigh’s shot was a breakaway down the middle. I tried to stop it,” Cave said.

Cave also noted a Falcon went down with an injury in the last few minutes but, “The ref didn’t stop the game and we got a little frustrated. I think that affected our concentration.”

“I think we played our best game of the season,” added Jenna Wild, the Falcons’ leading scorer. “I know I need to practice those one-touch shots in front of the net. But overall, I’m happy with my performance.”

“I don’t have any complaints,” said Falcon Coach Paul Arand. “We actually outplayed ATM. In the second half we controlled on the attack but just couldn’t find the back of the net.”

“Things will click better next time,” he said.

Arand praised first-half goalie Alexa Morley, and Lauren Sandri, Rita Jones and Natasha Roberts for their solid defense.

The Falcons host defending league champion Cedarcrest at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 4 at Waterman Field.

“For us, the critical games are with Cedarcrest,” Arand said. “If we win, we’ll play the weaker of two games at districts — either Shorecrest or Lynnwood.

“It is possible for both of us to go, but first we have to win,” he said.

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