PORT ORCHARD — The South Kitsap girls soccer team is finally into its league schedule, and the early results have been positive.
After opening with a scoreless tie against Sumner, the Wolves dominated Curtis in a 1-0 victory at home on Oct. 9 to bring their early record to 1-0-1.
No matter who was on the field, the 11 players fired on all cylinders. Head coach K-Lee Haynes took advantage of her deep bench and was able to move players in and out with ease and no change in the dynamic of the team.
“It’s a great thing about this team,” Haynes said. “I can tweak it a little bit and find ways to make things work, and they always seem to make it work.”
The speedy Wolves had the Vikings on their heels all night.
A quick, one-touch passing attack combined with relentless energy and tenacity had Curtis chasing them up and down the field.
South Kitsap had all of the good offensive chances in the first half.
Celina Madrid hit a solid header on a corner kick, but keeper Grace Collins — as she had to do often — made a good leaping save. Ashley Cameron also had a pair of free kicks that forced excellent saves.
The Wolves finally broke through just before the end of the first half.
Madrid blew past a defender down the right side and a drew a foul and a free kick from about 20 yards out. She took the kick herself and ripped the ball past the keeper to give her team a 1-0 lead.
“I told them that tonight, more so than most nights, they were really able to play out of tight spots together and play to each other quickly and find their way out,” Haynes said.
“We’ve been really working on getting into the attack and finding feet and getting the ball on the ground to feet.”
The defense played well against a somewhat lackluster Curtis offense. In the 69th minute, a rare defensive breakdown gave the Vikings their best opportunity.
Isabella Weaver dribbled her way past a defender and then into a dangerous scoring area. She unleashed a strong strike but put it wide of goal.
Curtis mustered little else, and South Kitsap walked off the field victorious in the contest.
By the end of this week, South Kitsap will be halfway through its league schedule. The Wolves had a Thursday matchup away at Emerald Ridge after the Independent’s print deadline and a Saturday evening home game with Graham-Kapowsin.
— Mark Krulish is a reporter for Kitsap News Group. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @MKrulishKDN.