In this edition of “The Full 80,” a look at Mount Si’s attempt to grab one of two state berths out of the rugged KingCo 4A in first season with the league.
Mount Si hopes to emerge from shadows of Issaquah, Skyline
Living in the shadows of perennial KingCo 4A powers Issaquah and Skyline, the Mount Si High School girls soccer team is quietly having a banner season.
The Wildcats (11-3-1), playing in KingCo 4A for the first season since moving up from KingCo 3A/2A, hope they don’t get lost in the shuffle when two state berths are handed out to KingCo 4A schools.
The tough road started back in early September and continued Monday night in a playoff for the No. 2 spot into the KingCo 4A tournament. Mount Si and Skyline tied for second in the KingCo 4A regular season with 19 points and 6-1-1 marks and face off Monday night at 5:30 p.m. at Juanita High School for the No. 2 seed.
Skyline won the match 2-1 on Monday night, rallying from an early 1-0 deficit. Amanda Johnston scored the game-winning goal in the 49th minute.
The winner gets the No. 2 seed and a spot into the winner-to-state KingCo 4A championship on Monday, Nov. 3. The loser gets the No. 3 seed and faces three must-win games in the KingCo 4A playoffs to get to state.
“KingCo 4A is brutal and every single game in the league is one where you’ve got to be ready,” Mount Si coach Darren Brown said. “There’s no weak teams. There’s good athletes and there are good, solid players on every team.
“To win [Monday] in the tiebreaker is a much easier road to travel to get to state. The other route is a grinder.”
Mount Si lost to Skyline 2-1 on Sept. 18 and then played the Spartans to a 1-1 tie on Sept. 30. The Wildcats also suffered a tough 1-0 decision to regular-season champion and top-ranked Issaquah (11-1-1 overall, 7-0-0) on Oct. 21.
“Skyline and Issaquah have always been the benchmarks for our programs,” Brown said. “Personally, for our program we’re trying to strive for that kind of excellence year in and year out. It’s a tough task, but the girls are ready for it, though.”
No matter how the 2014 ends for the Wildcats, it will be a memorable season.
Brown collected his 100th career coaching win at Mount Si earlier this season and two player eclipsed school records.
Arkansas-bound senior Karli White broke the school’s single-season scoring mark with 41 points on 16 goals and nine assists and can add to it. White surpassed the 36 points of Miranda Rawlings in 2012.
Junior goalkeeper Nellie Joselyn posted a school-best nine shutouts and can add to it. Joselyn moved past Jessica Blessard’s mark of eight clean sheets put up in 2006.
“We’ve had a really good season so far and we’ve had a lot of shining moments,” Brown said. “We haven’t been scored on it the first half all season.”
Two more wins, including Monday, would give the Mount Si program-changing momentum.
“We just want to keep this thing going,” Brown said.
Link to KingCo 4A tournament bracket:
Around the Area
One team from Washington state – Issaquah at No. 23 — remained in the Top 25 of the national rankings from National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA). Below is the NSCAA’s Oct. 21 poll (the next poll is out today, Oct. 28):
Three teams from Washington are in the NSCAA Region VI Top 15 rankings, led by Issaquah at No. 4 and followed by Skyline of Sammamish at No. 9 and Kentridge at No. 12. The link below is for the Region VI, which came out Oct. 21 (the next poll is out today, Oct. 28):
Four teams from Washington state – Skyline of Sammamish at No. 12, Issaquah at No. 14, Kentridge at No. 24 and Bellevue at No. 44 – are currently in the Fall FAB 50 High School Girls Soccer Rankings from Oct. 21 put out by www.topdrawersoccer.com (the next poll is out today, Oct. 28):