Wildcats soccer on roll

SNOQUALMIE - The Mount Si girls soccer program has not missed a beat despite losing one of its top players. The departure of junior forward Kirsten Mills became official last week, but it did not stop the Wildcats from continuing to win.

Mount Si scored a key 2-1 win at Bellevue last Tuesday night. The road win was a big one for the Wildcats, who were beat by the Wolverines by just one point for the final conference playoff spot last season.

Jordan Tipton and Jessica Oliver each scored goals for the Wildcats, and freshman sensation Nikki Stanton added an assist.

'Cats christen field with win

Mount Si opened the home soccer schedule last Thursday night. In their first game in the new Wildcats stadium, Stanton made her mark yet again in a big way.

The budding potential superstar scored her first goal as a Mount Si player, and added another assist as the Wildcats defeated the Sammamish Totems 2-0.

Mount Si coach Darren Brown said he and assistant coaches Glen Cramer and Gerald Bopp have been working with Stanton.

"We're trying to work with Nikki on giving her the green light, firing some shots inside the 20, and she can. She's got a beautiful shot; she's just been penetrating and dishing off so much," said Brown. That work appears to have paid off in a big way.

The game's first goal was scored in the 45th minute as Stanton fed Amy Torget, who barely put the ball in the net. Then Stanton went to work herself. She roared past a defender with a burst of speed in the 66th minute and fired a laser into the back of the net past Sammamish goalie Kelsey Hasselblad to give Mount Si the cushion. Forward Mariana Zanella offered praise for Stanton.

"We're really grateful to have Nikki. She's a really great player and she's a good person, too," Zanella said.

Overall, said Brown, the play of his team could have been better.

"In the first half, I didn't think we played so good; second half, we played better, but there's still improvement to be made," Brown said.

Mount Si dominated the first 20 minutes of play, then the Totems opened things up in the second 20 minutes of the first half and got several quality scoring chances out of it. The Wildcats regained control on the game and controlled most of the final 40 minutes of action.

Jessica Oliver said part of what makes Mount Si click is who they have helping them at practice.

"I think about once or twice a week, a few of the guys [Wildcat boys soccer players], they come out and they play defense against us, and we play three-on-three and scrimmages, and they help us sometimes step up our game because we kind of want to beat them," said Oliver.

One issue that is emerging appears to be uneven lighting in the new stadium. There is a small strip of field in front of the benches that is much darker than the rest of the field since the light banks hovering over the stadium only light the football portion of the field. Brown is looking to change that.

"We're going to try to work on getting a light in here so it can brighten up more of the field, but it is a problem," Brown said.

Mount Si hosts Interlake Thursday night in the final game of its three-game home stand. Game time is 7:30 p.m.

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