This week is now a battle for a guaranteed spot at districts for the Wolves.
Following a 6-1 blowout win in North Mason on April 28, Sequim kept pace with the North Kitsap Vikings on April 30 but saw the game slip away late in the 2-0 loss.
A weird moment may have shifted the momentum against the Wolves, said head coach Dave Brasher.
At the 60-minute mark Sequim (6-4 in league, 7-5 overall), in fourth place as of May 3 in the Olympic League, was holding the now first place Vikings (9-1, 11-2-1) at no score. Suddenly, a high kick is punched out by Sequim goalkeeper Austin Wagner and into the chest of Adrian Espinoza who instinctively catches the ball.
Rather than a penalty kick, the Vikings were given a throw-in.
Brasher said the referees must have missed the moment. Karma came around though. North Kitsap couldn’t capitalize after the penalty but seven minutes later Ryen Whitford scored on an assist from brother Bryce.
Brasher said they weren’t able to close down quickly enough to prevent the goal.
He said the odd circumstance earlier may have been in his players’ heads because it felt like they scored already.
“It’s probably one of the weirdest games I’ve ever seen,” Brasher said.
“It was like a mental breakdown and the game just wasn’t quite the same from that moment.”
Sequim controlled the ball through the remainder of the game with several opportunities to even the score but shots either soared over or were wide to the goal.
“There was a ton of opportunities as usual,” Brasher said. “They did a good job defensively and our looks were good but not quite good enough with a foot in there.”
As Sequim was pushing in the last minute, Wagner was caught out of position helping to push the ball and Bryce Whitford scored on an assist from Brady Pierce with one minute to go (79).
The game evened the season series at 1-1 with Sequim defeating North Kitsap 3-1 on March 25.
“We played with those guys,” Brasher said. “It’s the first time in awhile we’ve seen a Sequim team play with a North Kitsap team. We were as good if not better this time. That’s really encouraging.”
Earlier in the week, Sequim kept within reaching distance for third place with Port Angeles (7-4, 10-5) by repeating their dominance over the North Mason Bulldogs (0-9, 1-11-1). Thomas Winfield led all scorers with two goals. The first came from Patrick McCrorie and the second a header from an Eli Berg corner. Christian Salas and McCrorie also scored along with Josiah Uriquiah and Addie Berg with an assist from Eli Berg.
To finish the regular season, Sequim traveled to Bremerton (4-7, 5-10) on Monday and host Olympic (1-8, 1-11-1) to end the regular season.
The Wolves, at best, can finish third, which would play a loser-out game on May 14. Fourth place plays a pigtail game on May 12 for the chance to play at districts on May 14.
Olympic League standings
(as of May 3)
Team Lg. Over.
North Kitsap 9-1-0 11-2-1
Kingston 8-2-0 10-4-0
Port Angeles 7-4-0 10-5-0
Sequim 6-4-0 7-5-2
Bremerton 4-7-0 5-10-0
Olympic 1-8-0 3-10-0
North Mason 0-9-0 1-11-1