Common sights in Sequim during the month of May: sunshine sprinkled with rain, Irrigation Festival craziness and Sequim High School’s boys soccer team making a run into the post-season.
For the first time in five seasons, however, the Wolves found themselves out of the playoff hunt.
How will the boys in purple and gold get back to their winning ways? Elbow grease.
"This year’s team will be a working man’s team," says Sequim coach Dave Brasher, entering his 13th year as the Wolves’ leader.
With the school’s all-time scorer Kai Antrim (40 goals in 2006-2008) graduated, Brasher and fellow coaches are looking to a more broad attack from their young charges. Making the switch from defense to a forward position is long, athletic David LaBeaume, who teams with fellow senior Erik Huston and newcomer Aldo Garcia, a left-footed sophomore, as attackers.
All told, Sequim’s returning players accumulated just three goals in 2008.
Junior Zane Carey and newbie underclassmen Jerry Azanza (soph) and Evan Watkins (frosh) shore up a remodeled midfield.
In the back, defenders junior Austin Sanford and senior Jose Najera hope to keep shots from peppering senior goalkeeper Matt Bedinger.
"The team is smart and defends well," Brasher said. "Set plays will be key and with a few free kick and corner kick goals they could nick a couple (of) extra wins."
New to the Olympic League this season is North Kitsap. With their sister school Kingston, NK’s Vikings will make it tough for Sequim to scramble atop the league standings. Olympic and Bremerton, both 3A schools, figure to be tough and rival Port Townsend seems to field a strong match-up.
Sequim’s biggest foe, however, may be comes in the form of a bridge – a remodeled bridge. With the May closing of the Hood Canal bridge, Sequim has an unprecedented six games in the span of eight days near the end of April, putting the onus on the Wolves to stay healthy and perhaps use a deeper lineup than normal.
Brasher has high hopes for these footballers.
"This team should get better all year and if they stay healthy, (they) could be near the top of the 2A group," he said.
Reach Michael Dashiell at email@example.com.