EAST BREMERTON — The Olympic boys soccer program has fallen on some hard times, but there are signs that things are beginning to turn around.
The Trojans have had some positive results this season, including an overtime loss to the Olympic League’s top team, Sequim, and close losses to Bremerton and Tumwater. But a 40-match winless streak was still hanging over their heads entering Saturday’s game against Kingston.
The team finally put that skid to rest, defeating Kingston 2-1 in overtime. Their last win came in 2016 against North Mason.
“That’s more fun for me than anything else; seeing all the hard work pay off,” said Olympic head coach Michael Wright.
Olympic’s golden goal was one reminiscent of Landon Donovan’s extra time score for the United States Men’s National Team against Algeria in the 2010 World Cup, and it likely meant just as much to the Trojans as that iconic goal did to U.S. soccer fans.
Midfielder Maynor Sutuj led the fastbreak out of the midfield and sent a long pass forward, looking to connect with Lukas Smukowska. Kingston’s keeper closed in on the pass near the top of the box, but couldn’t field it cleanly. Josh Frey, who was trailing on the play, collected the rebound and sent the ball home for the win, touching off the celebration.
The goal was the end result of a team persevering through consecutive 0-15-1 seasons and giving up a game-tying goal less than ten minutes prior after working hard for over 60 minutes to get the lead.
“It’s showing them that the right work ethic and the right attitude will get them this,” Wright said.
The Bucs tied the match in the 73rd minute as Daniel Hornor and Dave Andersen executed a nice give-and-go in an odd-man situation and Andersen finished the play.
Kingston is struggling mightily with injuries early in this campaign. On Saturday, the team only had two subs available as the bench was populated mostly by players in street clothes. But even with some talented players still on the field, the Bucs had trouble sustaining much offensive momentum.
“Once they scored on us, we picked up our game,” said Kingston head coach Craig Smith. “I liked what my captain said to the boys after the game: ‘Hey, it’s our own fault. We didn’t give it our best today.’”
Sutuj had opened the scoring in the 63rd minute after Frey played a nice cross to Jose Zamora, who flicked the ball over to Sutuj for the goal.
The Trojans had the better run of play for much of the first half and had been building towards that goal after just missing on a handful of chances.
Olympic keeper Cadyn Kinsfather also made a number of great saves in the match, including one on a shot by Kingston’s Ben Hewett early in overtime that was headed for the top corner of the net. Kinsfather leaped into the air and caught it with his outstretched hands as he was falling to the turf.
Olympic 2, Kingston 1
First half — None.
Second half — Olympic, Maynor Sutuj (Jose Zamora), 63rd; Kingston, Dave Andersen (Daniel Hornor), 73rd.
Overtime — Olympic, Josh Frey (Sutuj), 84th.