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Soccer opens season at Port Townsend
Opening day of the Pirate girls’ soccer season could almost have been a metaphor of life on Vashon Island.
The day that ended with a solid win for the JV team and a narrow loss for the varsity started with the team bus arriving at the north-end ferry terminal on time, only to find that the Tillikum was broken and the next departure for Southworth was a half hour later than planned, meaning the Pirates would arrive in Port Townsend late for the JV kickoff.
On arrival at the field the officials and coaches agreed to shorten the JV game by five minutes a half to allow the varsity game to start almost on time.
Port Townsend JV was short-handed so Pirate coach Liam O’Neil fielded only nine players, keeping out three substitutes, to keep the game even. Even so, Pirate Brooke McKallor took a pass from Marya Munsey in the third minute and put the ball in the back of the net to give Vashon a 1-0 lead that held to halftime.
Taylor Hernandez took a feed from McKallor to give the Pirates a 2-0 lead two minutes into the second period. Ten minutes later a Vashon defensive lapse left the Redskins’ Nakila Millman uncovered on a rebound from the goalkeeper and the score was 2-1.
In the second half the Redskins, with no substitutes, were beginning to tire and the Pirates took advantage. Hernandez, with an assist from Megan Hackett, put Vashon up 3-1. Hernandez very nearly got a hat trick when another shot skidded off the top bar of the goal and fell short of the goal line.
Vashon’s defense and goalkeepers Larissa Kuhn, first half, and Courtney Gateman, second half, deserve a lot of credit for the win.
The Pirate varsity, with plenty of players but still missing some key players due to previous obligations, faced a Redskins team that already had two games, both wins, under their belts. Vashon controlled much of the first half and the score was tied at nil-nil as the clock wound down to the break.
In stoppage time Port Townsend took a corner kick that pinballed off several players and finally dropped into the net. The Redskins added a second goal in the first minute of the second half.
Vashon took control of the game after that and in the 69th minute of the game Cat Amick took a pass from Alissa Kimbrough. She shot from almost point-blank range and the ball deflected off a defender and across the goal line.
Vashon controlled the game for the final 20 minutes, but despite the efforts of Teal Sigler, Amick and the rest of the Pirates, the final score remained Port Townsend 2, Vashon 1.
Goalkeeper Sophie Nespor had a spectacular game, especially in the final 20 minutes, and defender Anna Jones was solid, said coach Paul Beytebiere.
Beytebiere was especially pleased with the play of freshmen Jamie Marken and Anastazia Provost in their first varsity game.
The Pirates next game is tomorrow, Sept. 17, at home against Orting. JV starts at 4 p.m., varsity at 6 p.m.