South Whidbey girls soccer fought for its chance to make the postseason.
It was a battle the Falcons ultimately lost, however, after their season ended with a 2-2 overtime against Sultan on Oct. 20. The Falcons were one game behind the Turks in the Cascade Conference, which was enough to dispel any chances of making the district playoffs.
South Whidbey finished 2-12-2 overall and 1-10-1 in league.
That doesn’t mean that the Falcons walked away with nothing, head coach Brian McCleary said. Experience, maturity and a sense of how a varsity game should be played will all work in the players’ favor next year. The Falcons’ team was young and inexperienced this season, he said.
“I think overall they’ll be stronger going into next year because of the general understanding of the attitude they need to have and the level of effort they need to give the whole game,” McCleary said.
The Falcons will lose several seniors to graduation, which includes midfielder Taylor Hamilton, defender Shannon Kinskie, defender Fiona Callahan and midfielder Carmen Colar.
There is promise, however, in young players like freshmen Allison Papritz, Ashley Ricketts, Mallory Drye, Lila McCleary and Karyna Hezel, who all played roles either on defense or on the attack for the Falcons.
Lila McCleary scored both of the Falcons’ goals against Sultan.
“They felt good enough to be in the playoffs,” Brian McCleary said. “They felt like they were the better team than Sultan and Cedar Park Christian, but that’s the way it goes at times.”
“I feel really bad for the seniors because they were hopeful to make the playoffs,” he added.