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Strong soccer season ends at playoffs
By BEN BORK
The most challenging games the VHS boys soccer team has faced were in the last week of the regular season. The varsity squad started with a subdued performance and ended with a great upset over the Nisqually League leaders.
On Monday Vashon played Eatonville High. Eatonville was a team that had zero wins and that the Pirates had dominated earlier in the season, 7-0. On this day, however, the Pirates struggled to tie up the match and hold off the opponents. But in the end they did exactly that and the game ended 1-1.
Two days later was a game against Seattle Christian. Previously this pairing had resulted in a tie. Seattle Christian went ahead by two goals, and it appeared that the boys from Vashon were in for a repeat of Monday’s match. The Pirates' eventually started passing and had good movement on and off the ball. Vashon finished the game with a 4-2 victory.
The final game of the regular season was played against first-place Bellevue Christian. Bellevue’s record was 15 wins, 0 losses and 1 tie, and Vashon had lost in Bellevue 5-1 earlier in the season.
The Pirates would go down 1-0 by halftime, but finely took command as Anthony Gateman stepped up and calmly shot the ball into the back of the net to tie it up. They held off the league leaders for 20 minutes, until a breakthrough finally came in the last minute as Austyn Heit burned the outside defender and then the Bellevue goalie for the go ahead goal. The final score was 2-1 as the Pirates handed Bellevue its first loss of the season and claimed third place in the Nisqually League heading into playoffs.
In the Tri-District playoffs, Vashon faced a tough Blaine High School team. The physicality of the Borderites was a surprise but did not go unchecked from the Pirates, and situational play, at times, was left for the players to scrap it out on the pitch.
The field was fast, and Gabe Reoux scored a tying goal off a corner kick only to have a lapse in the Vashon defense see Blaine go ahead again. Vashon spent the rest of the match dominating possession and looking for the equalizer. Ultimately their season ended with a 2-1 loss. The fight was there, but it was not the Pirates’ day to win.
— Ben Bork is the coach of the VHS boys soccer team