Not even 90 minutes of soccer could determine a winner in a KingCo 4A loser-out playoff game between the Eastlake Wolves and Mount Si Wildcats boys soccer teams.
The two rival squads were tied at 1-1 after 80 minutes of play and two five-minute overtime sessions. The outcome of this playoff tilt came down to an overtime shootout. Eastlake outscored Mount Si 4-3 in the shootout, earning a 2-1 win May 6 at Eastlake High School in Sammamish.
Darren Brown, Mount Si’s head coach, said the team played well throughout the game, had some good opportunities, and just barely lost the game. It was an extra bitter loss for the Wildcats, who were eliminated in last season’s playoffs in a similar penalty kick shootout against Union High School.
“This group of boys worked hard for each other and really improved as the season progressed. We all wanted to keep going, but the game had to end somehow and penalty kicks edged us out,” Brown said.
Eastlake forward Blake Miller connected on the fourth and final goal of the shootout to lift his team to a victory. Miller’s shot was perfectly placed in the upper left corner of the net just out of the reach of Mount Si goalie, Griffin Popp.
“I did what I normally do which is to look right to see if I can fake him out and then go left. It worked. We won from that,” Miller said.
Eastlake players Shayne Predmore, Bakary Sey and Jacob Bernacki also recorded goals in the shootout. Mount Si players scoring in the shootout were Reed Paradissis, Jared Davies and Matt Young.
Eastlake keeper Josh Dion came up with two sensational diving saves in the shootout as well. Eastlake head coach Adam Gervis couldn’t have been more proud of Dion’s performance between the posts.
“Hats off to the keeper. He is a freshman. It was a great performance on both sides by the keepers,” Gervis said. “It was an absolutely brilliant team performance.”
The matchup between rivals was extremely physical. Mount Si’s defense was focused on stopping Eastlake’s top scorer Bakary Sey throughout the duration of the game. Sey, who was fouled near Mount Si’s goal in the first half, had a chance to score on a penalty kick in the 16th minute. Sey’s shot to the right side of the goal was blocked by Popp. Mount Si’s Alec Bothell scored in the 21st minute, giving his team a 1-0 lead. Eastlake tied the game on Crinan Dunbar goal in the 53rd minute.
“It was probably one of the most physical games I have been in. That is what Mount Si is known for which is being super physical but I feel like we matched up with them pretty well. That is what helped us beat them,” Miller said. “We couldn’t lose. That was our mindset the whole game. We didn’t want to lose.”
Looking back on the season, Brown said “We had a great group of kids and went undefeated in the second half with five wins, zero losses and three ties.”
Record reporter Evan Pappas also contributed to this report.