Wildcats' soccer team struggles for league wins

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SNOQUALMIE - The Mount Si Wildcats girls' soccer game last Tuesday was a tale of two halves. The first half was solid, as the Wildcats and Mercer Island Islanders battled hard to a scoreless tie after 40 minutes. The second half was a much different story, as Islander junior midfielder Nance Hill scored a goal and added assists on two goals, as Mercer Island defeated Mount Si 3-0 at Snoqualmie Community Park.

"I thought we adjusted well to a lot of different things, namely the field, the width and the length of the field, the grass and to Mount Si's three forwards, which we don't see a whole lot in this league. I also think we adjusted well to their physical style of play," said Mercer Island coach Bryan Mazza, as his team moved five points in front of the Wildcats for second place in the Kingco 3A standings.

Wildcats' freshman forward Mariana Zanella wished things could have gone better.

"I think that we came out really strong in the first half and we just needed to keep it up in the second half," she said.

Hill assisted on the Islanders' first goal, a high-arching score over the head of Wildcats' senior goalie Shannon Posey, in the 45th minute. The goal was tallied by senior midfielder Madeline O'Meara.

In the 68th minute, Hill fed senior forward Kate Elston with a pass, and Elston finished with Mercer Island's second goal. Hill then capped things off in the 74th minute with a header off a pass from Elston.

"I just tried to come out and play hard. My team has been working real hard, and it was just good to come out and get a good win," said Hill.

Mount Si coach Darren Brown was disappointed, and with the postseason still uncertain, his disappointment was understandable.

"We cant play like this. This isn't going to cut it. We keep playing this way and forget about it," he said, referring likely to the postseason. "I expect more from them than this."

Injuries haven't eased the Wildcats' shortcomings this year. Posey was filling in for ailing goalkeeper Jessica Blessard, and freshman Katie Woolsey was absent. Woolsey, called up from junior varsity earlier this season to replace the injured Amy Torget, suffered a foot injury two weekends ago during a club match and is out indefinitely.

Last Thursday, Mount Si was looking for redemption at Bellevue, but the result was the same, another shutout loss. The Wolverines scored the game's lone goal early in the second half and beat Mount Si 1-0 to leave the Wildcats tied for fourth in the conference with Sammamish.

Tuesday, Mount Si played Sammamish at the Ridge, and on Thursday, the Wildcats travel to Liberty to meet the Patriots, a team Mount Si defeated handily earlier this season at home. Game time for Thursday's game is 7:30 p.m.

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