The Vashon boys’ soccer team played Charles Wright last Tuesday night at home in the semi-final of the Division playoffs.
The Pirates had 10 minutes’ more possession and completed 318 passes and 38 sequences of three or more passes with the longest being 20 consecutive passes. This led to a total of 30 shots, 23 shots on goal and 11 corner kicks. The Charles Wright junior goalkeeper, Danny Adams, singlehandedly kept his team in the game, making 21 saves, a number of which looked to be sure goals. Charles Wright had a total of six shots and three on goal forcing Pirate goalkeeper, Richard Rivas, to make critical saves. In the end, Tommy Delargy scored twice, and the Pirate defense denied the Tarriers a shot attempt in the second half, booking their ticket to play the Klahowya Eagles last Thursday for the Division championship with the 2-0 win.
The Pirates played the Eagles to a 0-0 draw on Klahowya’s field over spring break, and the Pirates knew they would be playing another direct team. Pirate Coach Bork made two starting roster changes with Levy Stahl starting at midfield and Marley Kott in goal as Richard Rivas was injured in warm-ups. Vashon got off to a fast start with two shots on goal within the first five minutes of play. In the seventh minute, Pirate defender JJ Bogaard took possession of the ball in the Pirates’ defensive end and started a series of six passes that ended with Delargy breaking through the Eagles’ defense on the left side of the goal and poking it past the keeper at an impossible angle into the top of the net for a Pirate score.
In the 18th minute, the Eagles had a free kick opportunity on the right side of the goal 20 yards out. Kott set up a wall of three Pirate defenders to guard the left side of his net and put Bogaard on the right on the goal line. The free kick was a scorcher, low and to Kott’s right, he parried the ball into the air, and Bogaard, who held his position, cleared the ball off the goal line for a corner kick. Kott was forced into action again in the 22nd minute, when an Eagle striker headed a corner kick high toward the center of the goal. Kott was able to rise up and palm the ball over the top of the goal. Vashon led 1-0 at the half. Vashon controlled the half with six shots on goal and 57% possession but lacked the fast pace and simple, one-touch play the Pirates are known for.
In the second half, Klahowya had the wind at their back and the sun in the Vashon keeper’s eyes, and they pressed high and hard to get the tying goal. In the first minute, an Eagles’ striker headed a throw-in high toward the top left corner of the Vashon goal. Kott was blinded by the sun but was able to bat the ball out of bounds at the last second. In the 48th minute, with the Eagle defense playing high, Finley Oswald passed the ball to Delargy at midfield. Tommy took the ball, dribbled 40 yards through three defenders and chipped the ball over the keeper into the far side of the net. Pirates 2-0.
Klahowya continued to press and had four shots on goal in the second half to Vashon’s two, but Vashon made its shots count. In the 62nd minute, Delargy possessed the ball at the top of the box, dribbled right, passed back left to Oswald, who sent a slow precise shot to the left side of the goal. Vashon packed its defense and was able to absorb the remaining attacks by the Eagles. Vashon won the game 3-0. The Pirates are the number one seed in State playoffs where they played their first game at home against the Bridgeport Mustangs on Wednesday evening (after press time). Should the Pirates win they will play a quarterfinal later in the week on a date and location to be determined.
—Johnathan Kott is the father of a Pirate soccer player.