Vikings’ soccer season ends with loss to Wolves

TACOMA — While a strong offense put the Wolves ahead, an impenetrable defense sealed the win as South Kitsap eliminated North Kitsap from the Narrows League soccer playoffs Saturday. The mixture was a potent one, cementing a 1-0 win and ending the Vikings season outright.

TACOMA — While a strong offense put the Wolves ahead, an impenetrable defense sealed the win as South Kitsap eliminated North Kitsap from the Narrows League soccer playoffs Saturday.

The mixture was a potent one, cementing a 1-0 win and ending the Vikings season outright.

Despite the season-ending loss, Vikings coach Chris May was proud of the way his team battled in its final game of the Narrows League playoffs.

“We played really well but just couldn’t put the ball in the back of the net,” he said. “It was such a close game. We played really hard. Sometimes you get the breaks, sometimes you don’t, and we didn’t get the breaks we needed.”

North had its chances.

Josh Gilson and Zach Sampson had a couple of golden opportunities to tie the game for the Vikings in the second half.

“One of Zach’s shots hit the crossbar, and Josh hit the post and missed on a breakaway,” May said. “We just couldn’t get the ball in the net.”

South’s Bryan Everson scored in the 25th minute just inside the 18-yard box. Everson’s low shot hovering just above the ground was just out of the reach of North goalie Devin Langaker’s outstretched arms. After taking a 1-0 lead, South unveiled a conservative approach aimed at stopping the Vikings offense from scoring. It did just that.

“After they got that goal they really hunkered down, putting the majority of their players in the backfield,” May said. “They closed everything down pretty tight and made it hard for us to find gaps in their defense.”

North was relentless in its effort to tie, nonetheless.

“We kept taking it to them. We just couldn’t get the ball past their defense,” May said. “We never gave up.”

The Vikings will graduate eight seniors off the team finishing with an overall record of 10-6-3 in 2007. The defense, led by sophomore goalie Langaker allowed an average of only one goal per contest this year.

“Our defense did a great job. We were in pretty much every game we played because we did a great job of stopping opposing teams from scoring,” May said. “Stopping your opponent is more important than scoring, and if you’re able to play good defense, you will be in every game.”

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