Teammates surround SHS senior Eli Gish, center, after his score in the first half of a 2-0 win over Port Angeles on March 25. Gish was named WIAA/Gesa Credit Union State Athlete of the Week for March 21-27. Sequim Gazette file photo by Michael Dashiell

Teammates surround SHS senior Eli Gish, center, after his score in the first half of a 2-0 win over Port Angeles on March 25. Gish was named WIAA/Gesa Credit Union State Athlete of the Week for March 21-27. Sequim Gazette file photo by Michael Dashiell

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Sequim’s boys soccer squad picked up a trio of wins in the span of 96 hours, including a key win over a tough 1A squad, last week to improve to 5-0.

Wolves edge Eagles

The Wolves built a three-goal lead, withstood some strong counterattacks by the Eagles and came away with a late insurance goal to stay unbeaten with a 4-2 win at host Klahowya on March 31

“We really put the pressure on them early … and we did a good job of keeping that pressure up as we built our lead,” Sequim coach Ken Garling said.

Ethan Knight scored first in the 35th minute, cleaning up on a scrum inside the 6-yard box.

“The opportunities were there for us in the first half, and in the second half, the boys came out fired up and wanted to continue pressuring them,” Garling said.

Kristian Mingoy buried a goal off an assist by Aidan Braatan in the 48th minute, and Rafael Flores headed in a well-placed corner kick by Brandon Charters in the 50th minute.

“Rafael positioned himself perfectly, and the pass was on target,” Garling said.

Klahowya’s Michael Divano, a player who has trained in Spain and has pro soccer hopes, answered with a pair of goals.

“Up 3-0, we felt pretty confident, but their striker No. 9 got cooking,” Garling said. “Our defensive back four had done a good job of keeping him under wraps, but he’s a pretty talented kid.”

Sequim was able to buckle down and deny Divano and added its fourth goal on an Aidan Henninger strike to the lower left corner.

Wolves prevail in shoot-out win

Sequim and visiting Kingston produced another classic on April 1, with Sequim coming out on top via a 4-3 penalty kick shootout.

Garling described the match as a back-and-forth, end-to-end game.

Sequim scored early in the first half, notching a goal when Charters sent in a corner kick that Brandon Wagner netted.

“We went back and forth with them the rest of the half, had a number of shots, but couldn’t add to the lead,” Garling said.

Kingston answered with its own header goal off a corner kick in the 50th minute.

The teams finished regulation and two five-minute overtimes and headed to the shootout.

“Kingston had first crack and our goalie Jack Van De Wege made a big save right away and that set the tone and fired up our boys,” Garling said.

“He had a great game overall. And our boys just didn’t miss in the shootout.”

Overcoming Olympic

After giving up an early goal to Olympic, Sequim clamped down on defense and rallied for four goals — with senior co-captain Eli Gish having a role in three of them — to beat the Trojans 4-1 in Silverdale, the Wolves’ third game in four days.

Gish, who was just named a WIAA Athlete of the Week, had two goals and an assist.

Garling said the Trojans got on the board in the eighth minute on a rebound off Sequim keeper Trenton Rocha off a free kick. Garling said the Wolves’ defense didn’t allow Olympic any serious chances after that.

The Wolves got the equalizer in the 21st minute as Gish made a crossing pass to Charters, who booted the ball in directly.

“It was a one-time volley right in the back of the net,” Garling said.

Gish picked up his first goal in the 28th minute, this time the recipient of a cross from Tyler Lawson, who picked up an assist.

In the second half, Wagner beat two defenders in the 57th minute and booted the ball in for an unassisted goal.

“That was a nice individual effort,” Garling said.

The final goal in the 62nd minute was a free kick by Gish. From 35 yards out, Gish’s free kick went off the hands of the Olympic keeper for a long-range goal.

Van DeWege also played in goal for the Wolves.

Garling said defender Harrison Bell on defense and junior varsity player Keaton King had standout games for the Wolves.

Coming up

Sequim is back on the pitch Thursday, April 8, against East Jefferson.

The Wolves then have a week off before hosting Klahowya’s Eagles on April 15, and take on rival Port Angeles on the road on April 17.

Gish named Athlete of Week

SHS soccer standout Eli Gish saw his on-the-field efforts rewarded with the WIAA/Gesa Credit Union State Athlete of the Week for March 21-27.

Gish, a senior, scored five goals in an 11-0 rout of East Jefferson on March 24 and added a score in the Wolves’ 2-0 home shutout win over rival Port Angeles on March 25.

Throughout the year, the Washington Interscholastic Activities Association and Gesa Credit Union honor student-athletes each week from around the state.

“The award is designed to honor Washington’s best, and your performance certainly qualifies for this recognition,” the organization noted in its award notice to Gish.

“We know you spend a great deal of time and energy and that participation requires dedication and discipline. The COVID-19 pandemic has created unprecedented challenges for our member schools and our student-participants.

“This recognition is a testament to your resilience, your passion for your sport, and your contributions as an ambassador for your school and your community. “

A full list of weekly winners is available on the WIAA website at wiaa.com/athleteoftheweek.

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