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Boys soccer: Wolves topple league-leading Vikings SLIDESHOW
Despite the lead, Sequim coach Dave Brasher said, nothing was safe about Sequim's 2-0 advantage late in Saturday's key Olympic League matchup with North Kitsap.
"Worst lead in soccer," Brasher joked.
The Sequim leader could laugh a bit after his team finally secured a 3-1 win against the powerful Vikings, making the top of the league standings much more than a two-team race. The Wolves improved to 6-2 in league play to put pressure on North Kitsap and Kingston (7-1).
Brasher hadn't seen the visitors from Poulsbo yet this season but had heard the Vikings were quick and strong in the middle, yet beatable.
"(Early on) I saw we could play with them," Brasher said.
It was Sequim putting pressure on North Kitsap late in the first half, as Thomas Winfield and Cameron Chase gave chase to balls deep into Viking territory.
That aggressiveness paid off twice before the whistle, as Chase netted a goal from Winfield at the 27-minute mark and Chase found Winfield two minutes later for a quick 2-0 advantage.
"There's no ball that Thomas Winfield thinks he can't get to," Brasher said.
Despite some deep runs by North Kitsap, senior defender Lijah Sanford and goalkeeper Austin Wagner spearheaded the defensive effort while Bailey Collins and Hector Baylon earned Brasher's praise for keeping NK star Raul DeLuna in check.
The visiting squad finally broke through with about five minutes to play as Brian Duran made good on a penalty kick.
But Sequim kept on the attack and secured the win when a ball drifted deep into Viking territory. Viking goalie Alex Blanchard, who realized he was past the 18-yard penalty area, slipped on the grass field, allowing Sequim's Nic Baird to knock home the Wolves' third goal."I was just thinking, 'Get it on target,'" Baird said.
It was the first time Sequim's beaten North Kitsap since 2001, ending Sequim's 10-game losing streak to the purple-clad players from Poulsbo."We showed strength in the midfield and tackled hard," Baird said of keys to the win.
The Wolves earned a pair of wins earlier in the week. The Wolves shut out North Mason 3-0 on April 8, getting scores Chase, Sanford and Baylon.Two days later, Sequim blasted winless Olympic 7-3 as Winfield scored a hat trick (three goals) and Eli Berg had a goal and four assists. Will Bittner, Brandon Payne and Ron Welches also had goals for the Wolves.
Sequim hosted Kingston on April 15. The Wolves are back on the pitch April 17 at Port Angeles and host Klahowya on April 21.
Reach editor Michael Dashiell at firstname.lastname@example.org.