SHORELINE — The Eagles came together one final time Saturday morning to successfully erase the disappointment of Friday night’s semifinal loss to King’s Way Christian.
Seniors Rylee Radford and Kylie Woodrum hit the back of the net for the Eagles to capture third place in the 1A state tournament in a 2-1 triumph over Deer Park.
“Yesterday was a bummer, but we told each other that we were going to pick ourselves up,” said senior Kate Streck. “We didn’t want to go home with fourth place.”
The team’s seven seniors got to end their careers on a positive note. Woodrum, Radford, Streck, Gabrielle Marcoux, Kristen Hogg and Shaela Hagla all took their final bows in uniform on Saturday, as did keeper Maria Mist, who came over as an exchange student from Iceland.
“I love these girls,” Streck said. “We’re a close-knit group, and I think we just wanted to play our hearts out at the end because it was the last game for most of us.”
Deer Park hit the scoreboard first with a goal in the 13th minute. Klahowya had been dominating play from kickoff, but the Stags finally got an opportunity down the field and freshman Carmen Kiewert tucked home a shot with her left foot to give her team a 1-0 lead.
“This year we’ve occasionally had a lack of communication in the back,” Oelschlager said, “and they dig themselves a hole once in a while, but they seem to get themselves out of it.”
The Eagles answered with two goals in five minutes. Radford cleaned up a rebound left by the Deer Park keeper in the 23rd minute, and Woodrum scored on a free kick from the edge of the penalty area in the 28th.
“It’s nice to end the season on a victory,” Oelschlager said. “It’s not the one we came for, but we’ll take it.”
For some players, college is the next step, while the rest will be dominating the pitch in Sunday rec leagues through their adult years. Radford, who plans to play in college, has a younger sister, Kyla, who was a freshman for Klahowya this season. She said she plans to play close to home so she can see her lofty prediction for next year’s team come true.
“I want to watch them win state,” Radford said.
— Mark Krulish is a reporter for Kitsap News Group. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @MKrulishKDN.