Wrapping up a league title at the expense of its biggest nemesis, South Whidbey High School collected the North Sound Conference soccer crown with a 2-0 win over visiting King’s Friday, April 26.
The Falcons came into the match one game up on the Knights and needed to win the regular-season finale to avoid sharing the title with King’s.
South Whidbey (12-1) now rolls into the district tournament and hosts Lynden Christian (6-8-2), the Northwest Conference’s No. 2 seed, at 6 p.m. Monday, April 29.
A win will send the Falcons into the district championship match between the winner of Meridian (9-5-2) and King’s (8-3-1) at 7 p.m. Saturday, May 4, at Bellingham’s Whatcom Community College. The site may be changed it two North Sound Conference schools are involved.
If South Whidbey loses to Lynden Christian, it will host the winner of Sultan and Mount Baker at a yet-to-be-determined time Wednesday, May 1.
South Whidbey 2, King’s 0
“I believe this may be the first time that a South Whidbey High School boys varsity soccer team won the league championship, at least in many, many years,” coach Emerson Robbins said. “And to boot, with an undefeated record in league.
“Definitely an accomplishment the guys can take pride in for the rest of their lives.”
Emerson noted that his club got a break when the Knights’ star player Christian Engmann missed the match because of an injury.
The Falcons dominated the match, especially in the second half, and finished with a 17-5 shot advantage.
King’s attempted only one shot after the break.
South Whidbey prepared for the Knights’ long-shot attack, and its defensive mids, Andrew Curtis and Cormac Workman, controlled the midfield.
“I was also incredibly impressed with our right back, Eli Waldron,” Robbins said. “He played great D and made quite a few beautiful offensive runs throughout the game. Same with our very talented, left back, Thomas Simms.
“Our center backs, Joey Lane and Sequoia Durham, consistently thwarted any dangerous attacks that got past our mid-line.”
South Whidbey scored its first goal when the Knights’ keeper left the net in an attempt to secure possession, but the Falcons’ Nevin Daniels beat him to the ball and sent it to Graham Colar, who punched it in the open goal.
In the second half, Reilly McVay scored a “beautiful” goal, according to Robbins.
McVay received a through ball from Aidan O’Brien and “cleverly beat a defender with a slick move and then somehow was able to beat the keeper and find the far post corner.”
“Once again, this was a total team effort,” Robbins said. “I made the comment about this team before that there isn’t a single player on this team that I don’t have faith in, and these boys have a rare combination of strong will, determination and work rate, not to mention a lot of talent. I hope we can continue on as the boys have worked very hard all season for their success.”