Eagles muster up a playoff win

Through the first half, it looked like Klahowya would easily march on.

Through the first half, it looked like Klahowya would easily march on.

Unfortunately, the players sensed that too, Klahowya boys lacrosse coach Rob Hawley said of his team’s effort in a 10-6 win against San Juan Tuesday at Central Kitsap Junior High School in the first round of the Washington High School Boys Lacrosse Association Division II playoffs.

“Kind of by the skin of our teeth,” he said after the win. “I just don’t think we really played our best all day. Unfortunately, our guys figured they were gonna walk through this one. To San Juan’s credit, they played a heck of a game. They really outhustled us.”

But luckily for the Eagles, they had enough to hang on to the win, advancing to the second round for the first time in the program’s short history after making the playoffs for the fourth consecutive year.

“It’s pretty nice to get past the first round of the playoffs,” senior defender Yancy Lever said. “It feels really good. I don’t know what to say. Hopefully we’ll go into the next round of the playoffs and show what we can do.”

That next round will be among the toughest tests the Eagles have faced this season, taking on Seattle Prep, which handed Klahowya (7-3) an 18-3 loss on April 7 in an exhibition game. Seattle Prep finished as the Metro Division champs at 10-0 while the Eagles won the Olympic Division.

“If there’s a silver lining it’s that we get to play Seattle Prep again,” Hawley said. “Hopefully we’ll have a better showing.”

Both Hawley and Lever said the team learned a lot after playing Prep the first time.

“I think we learned that even if you go out and think you might lose, it’s still best to play your hardest,” Lever said. “Don’t give up.”

The loss gave Hawley more specific insights, as he said the team has tried to design some new schemes around what Seattle Prep likes to run.

“They move the ball very well,” Hawley said. “They’re very good at moving the ball around the field. We’ve been working on a couple things specifically that we think they do in those situations.”

The Eagles built an early first-half lead, taking a 6-2 lead into the break.

Klahowya had a scary moment early when Neil Sell came off the field following a hard helmet-to-helmet collision, falling down on the surrounding track. While Sell said he felt fine, he did sustain a cut above his left eye that left him with blood trickling down his face. Sell should be fine for the Prep game.

The Dragons weren’t giving up, however, scoring three quick goals to start the second half, narrowing the score to 6-5.

The Eagles kept the pressure on, outscoring San Juan 4-1 the rest of the way.

Karl Neumann and Danny Zimny each scored four goals for the Eagles, dishing out one and two assists respectively. Alex Schell scored the other two Klahowya goals. Schell and Cody Hertenstein each dished out assists as well.

San Juan got two goals and two assists out of Forest Dayton, while Josh Christianson also scored twice.

In the goal, Chad Reeder picked up the win for Klahowya, saving 10 shots. However, it was Dragon goalie Calin Meher who kept San Juan in the game, stopping 13 shots, many of them early.

“They should feel good about that,” Hawley said of his team advancing. “But I wish it had happened under the circumstance of playing one of their best games too.”

After all, he doesn’t expect SP to come out asleep.

“I don’t think we gave them anything to worry about (Tuesday),” he said. “They haven’t let down their play all year. We’ll have to play our very best. We’ll have to be way more intense and much more focused.”

That game took place last night, but results were unavailable at press time.

Girls lax

The Klahowya girls lacrosse team wrapped up a 5-4 season Wednesday, falling to Puyallup 14-3 to finish sixth in the South Division of the Washington Schoolgirls Lacrosse JV League. Last Friday the Eagles beat Auburn Mountainview 15-5.

Ruthie Hawley, daughter of boys coach Rob Hawley, finished fourth in the league with an averaging of 4.75 points per game, scoring 30 goals and dishing out eight assists on the season. Her 30 goals tied for fourth overall as well.

Izzy Coleman finished with 14 goals and an assist, Courtney Lewandowski scored 13 goals with four assists and both Koyuki Fritchman and Mauri Shearer each scored 12 goals this season.