Boys soccer: Wolves lock up state seed with district win

A key win over Franklin Pierce to open the West Central District tourney on May 10 had Sequim’s boys soccer squad on their way to the state 2A tournament.

The Wolves (11-7) were slated to open the tourney early this week, with a game set for May 16 or May 17; see sequimgazette.com for updates.

Sequim, the tourney’s seventh seed, fell in a 2-1 heartbreaker to Clover Park in the district semifinal on May 12, and dropped a 3-1 decision to Fife on May 14 to finish fourth overall.

Against Franklin Pierce, Sequim got a golden goal from defender Javier Gomez in double overtime, literally seconds away from dreaded penalty kicks to move to the semifinals of the bi-district tournament.

The Wolves got off to a hot start, taking a 2-0 lead early in the first half. Sequim scored its first goal on a “thundering header into the back of the net” from Aidan Henninger, Sequim coach Ken Garling said.

Brandon Wagner scored the Wolves’ second goal on a shot from 30 yards out. The ball glanced off a Franklin Pierce player and went in.

In the second half, “Franklin Pierce just unloaded pressure on us,” Garling said. “We started making mistakes. Credit to them, they just took it to us.”

Franklin Pierce scored a pair of goals to tie the match at 2-2 in the 67th minute.

“Our boys started to settle in [after that],” Garling said.

Late in the second overtime, the Sequim coaches were already working on picking who to kick the Wolves’ penalty kicks, Garling said.

With seconds left, the Wolves were able to get a deep throw-in. Wagner got the ball to Gomez.

“Javier made a diagonal run and saw an opportunity,” Garling said. “He was able to get a low shot off that glanced off a Franklin Pierce player and in.”

State results online

The first round of the state 2A tournament was set to kick off May 16 and 17; results were not available at press time.

With a win, Sequim advances to the quarterfinals set for May 20-21.

The state 2A semifinals and finals are scheduled for May 27-28 in Tumwater.