Lake girls Viking soccer finish season at State quarterfinals with high hopes for next year
Lake Sophomore Forward Brooke Pahukoa head and shoulders above Tahoma during Saturday night's state quarterfinal game against Tahoma - Photo by ROLIN MEYER
On Saturday, Nov. 13 the Lake Stevens’ Varsity Girls soccer team played against Tahoma in the quarterfinals.
After winning the previous Monday against Puyallup, the girls’ team continued on in the state tournament. The last time the Varsity team went to state was 2007, and since then Head Coach Andy Knutson has worked hard with his team to get them ready for their games in districts.
When the girls faced off against Tahoma, the starting lineup for the Lake Stevens’ Vikings was Kiaya Paulsen, Hannah Huesers, Brittney Pahukoa, Ashley Saracino, Lindsey Licht, Dani Walsh, Brooke Pahukoa, Hailey Folley, Ciara Carter and captains Randi Mielke and Breonna Countryman.
Taking the field on Maxwell Stadium, the teams played a tied game until the 34th minute when Tahoma’s Becca Velasco scored, putting Tahoma ahead. Velasco scored the goal despite the loss of her cleat and the Vikings attempted a comeback goal shortly after when Carter had a pass to the center of the field, but unfortunately the only player in the center of the field was not a fellow Viking, but a Tahoma Bears’player.
Tahoma stayed in the lead up into the second half, scoring shortly after the beginning of the half.
The Vikings goalkeeper, Paulsen, had an intense second half, after saving eight shots on goal. Pahukoa, Carter and Foley all had scoring opportunities in the second half and the Vikings never ended up scoring.
The game came to a close with a score of 2-0, Tahoma.
“We had a couple of good scoring chances. We got the ball in front of the net a couple times; scoring a goal is hard,” Head Coach Andy Knutson said.
While the Vikings may not have won, supporters of the Lady Vikings know what an accomplishment this is for the team. The team has worked together well all season and learned to play together.
“[They have worked hard on] being good teammates, by being unselfish and giving the team what it needs, regardless of what that is,” Knuston said.
Lake Senior Defender Randi Mielke clears during Saturday night's state quarterfinal game against Tahoma. - Photo by ROLIN MEYER
The Vikings team is still working on improving and will most certainly have the time. Many of the team will be returning next year; only three of the varsity players are seniors. Having so many returns next year will most likely prove an advantage for the Lady Vikings and Head Coach Andy Knutson feels the expectations have been raised.
“This season has been absolutely amazing. It’s by far the best season I’ve had at Lake Stevens High School and the ironic thing is no one expected us to do this well,” varsity player Saracino said. “We weren’t supposed to be as good as last year’s team or even come close to doing as well. But we did way better. It was such a fun and enjoyable season; I’m sad it’s over.”