Varsity 2019

Varsity Stangs make a strong statement in the opening round of the playoffs and dominate Lake Stevens 5-0!

The Mustangs were coming off of two tough losses to close the regular season and looked to rebound and regain their mojo to start their playoff run.  The Lake Stevens squad and supporters traveled long and far to the RHS pitch to take part in this loser-go-home match.  Which squad was better prepared?  Who wanted it more?

 

Redmond had no trouble in the early stanza of the match tracking down loose balls, and even when the passes weren’t crisp, the effort and tenacity was locked and loaded.  Dadzie started this match eager to please and was caught offsides before the linesman had a chance to unfurl his flag.  Patience, young grasshopper.  Stein gave the shiver to a few Lake Stevens midfielders which left them second guessing for the remainder of the contest.  There were some really nice possession sequences in the midfield between Michalski, Dadzie, and Kieneker, and all enjoyed the display of skill and teamwork.  Sometimes it is just good old fashioned fun to watch these guys play (even without popcorn in the mix)!

 

After a brief feeling-out period, Hernandez received the ball and applied one of his trademark rumblin’, bumblin’, whirling dervish’n runs down the left wing and crossed to Rabadan who connected and chipped the ball into the upper net at point blank range.  1-0 Stangs!

 

On the defensive side of the ball, Diaz has had a great run this season of frustrating opposing offenses with his skillful and physical play. The Lake Stevens wingers would often feel the brunt of this physicality and would bounce off of him like they had just run into an immovable object.  What was that, a fly?  Keeper Escalante appreciated the hard work from the RHS defensive front and looked to earn another elusive clean sheet for the Redmond fans.

 

A few minutes before half time, Dadzie made several Vikings defenders look helpless as he powered into the box pouncing on a loose ball and drove it home.  2-0 Stangs!  At this point, the unfairness of the universe was beginning to affect the Lake Stevens faithful, leading to loud huffy complaints and gnashing of teeth from their fans.  “The lady doth protest too much”, you could hear the birdies singing from the trees.

 

A few minutes after the opening whistle of the second half, Dadzie was up to his usual playful shenanigans and juked the keeper on a 1:1 and tapped it home for a 3-0 Stangs lead.  Before the ball had a chance to cool off, Hernandez got the ball and weaved and slalomed around three Vikings defenders before a low strike found nothing but twine and the back of the goal for a 4-0 Stangs lead!

 

Halfway through the second half, Dadzie completed the hat trick by pouncing on some space in the box after fielding a delicate pass from Rabadan.  5-0 Stangs!  The remainder of the match was more or less a formality, with the finality and inevitability of the moment sinking in on the Lake Stevens players and supporters.  Hats off to your Varsity Stangs for a great scoring display and the clean sheet!

 

These boys needed this result!  Onward and upward, Go Stangs!!

 

Goals:  11’ (Rabadan, assist Hernandez), 25’ (Dadzie), 45’(Dadzie), 49’ (Hernandez), 59’ (Dadzie, assist Rabadan)

Varsity 2019

Issaquah prove clinical in the red zone and upend the Varsity Stangs 3-1

This contest had the makings of a prize fight – two accomplished squads with no love for each other vying for the top of the league table, both hoping to assert with a dominant performance.  The stadium was buzzing, and the Issaquah Eagles had a boisterous contingent of vocal fans present for their senior night celebrations.  Redmond represented well too, with numerous superfans making their presence felt on the visitor’s side of the pitch.  Out of the gate, Issaquah seemed content to let the Stangs maintain possession of the ball, but incorporated a high press to pounce on any loose passes in the Redmond defensive half.

 

Redmond was able to make some defensive statements early, with a number of nice hard-nosed tackles from Diaz, whose strong physical play visibly frustrated the Issaquah wingers on his side of the action.  Also impressive was the hustle of Kieneker, working hard on the tackle in the offensive half and then scrambling back hard to cover on D.  Offensively, the Stangs were able to get a few dangerous balls into the Issaquah box, but couldn’t find the back of the net.  Redmond was also able to conjure up multiple corners in the early minutes but was not able to convert on those precious chances.  Issaquah was exceedingly crafty in the air and had multiple aerial near-goals headers in the early going, one of which was called back because of off sides.  The relentless aerial assault from Issaquah eventually took its toll, and half way through the opening 40, the Eagles crashed the box one too many times and scored off a header to put the Stangs down 1-10.

 

To Redmond’s credit, the Stangs came out of the restart with renewed fire.  Dadzie was able to pounce on a loose ball deep along the attacking right wing and crossed a ball which caromed off an Issaquah defender to a ready Stein for the left foot strike through traffic into the back of the net.  1-1!  At the tail end of the half, a lone Issaquah defender was able to shut down a dangerous Stein/Hernandez/Price RHS counter attack with a timely defensive tackle and was able to avert a sure Redmond chance.

 

Coming out of half time, Issaquah seemed a touch faster to the ball and picked up their possession game.  Redmond was trying to ask questions of the Issaquah D.  At one point early in the second stanza, Redmond had four players in the Issaquah box to field a Dadzie cross but weren’t able to find the daylight to drive it home.  On the Redmond defensive front, Bury, Wiyrick, and Fahrig were making their presence known in the air.  Fahrig in particular was taking the brunt of some Issaquah physicality in this match and paid a steep price on a few occasions.

 

Issaquah kept pushing hard for the go-ahead goal and wouldn’t take no for an answer.  Keeper Escalante had a wonderful point-blank save after an Issaquah cross connected with an unmarked forward deep in the box for a quick strike.  What quick reactions by Escalante!  Unfortunately, a minute later the ball was still in the Redmond defensive third and an Issaquah forward gave up the body in the box with a stretching/sliding goal which eluded all of the back line.  2-1, Issaquah.  A few minutes later, the Stangs earned a corner which was cleared to safety and directly into a surging Issaquah counter attack, which was deadly even though under-manned and proved clinical with a red zone cross and finish.  3-1 Issaquah.

 

In the waning minutes of the match, Issaquah battened down the hatches on defense and played the clock game.  This match was definitely a case of a supremely motivated Issaquah squad who did not want to disappoint on their senior night and made the most of their chances.

 

Goal: 34’ (Stein)

Varsity 2019

Varsity Stangs drop a tight one in overtime against Eastlake 2-3, but look forward with eager eyes to the playoffs

For the nine graduating seniors on the squad, the pre-match RHS Senior Night festivities marked the culmination of four years of hard work and a chance to reflect on their time spent at the home of the Mustangs.  What a treat it was to be able to celebrate these Redmond seniors along with the rest of the proud RHS Soccer family!  The packed house was raucous and ready for some mid-week soccer action under the Tuesday night lights.  Both teams had a chance to earn the coveted second seed in the Districts playoffs with a win, so this was sure to be a hotly contested affair!

 

The beginning of the match showcased some nice pep from the RHS players, with great movement off the ball.  Stein took an early jaunty crack from outside the box and although the shot on goal was saved with a desperate dive from the Eastlake keeper,  the strike put a bit of concern in the brow of the Eastlake faithful.  The Stangs defense was also clicking well in the early going, with all contributing to the cause.  Bury “The air is great up here”  impressed with his aerial assault, helped control possession for RHS, and cleared multiple balls safely out of harm’s way.  It has been fun to watch him work his smart play this season.  The Beast Wiyrick made his presence known with a “My shoulder is bigger than your shoulder” defensive manhandling of the Eastlake forwards.  The illustrious Mr. Tibbs took his trademark scrambling to another level and had everyone on the RHS side of the pitch chanting to the opposing stands “We can’t see you scampering!  We can’t see you scampering!”

 

For the first fifteen minutes of the contest RHS was in solid control, maintaining possession and running Eastlake ragged around the pitch.  Even the miscue passes would somehow find their way back into RHS possession.  Kieneker’s command of the midfield was impressive and he always seemed to find a weaving path to elude the Eastlake contingent.  Stein had a couple of nice additional chances in the first half, both of which ended up just wide of the promised land.  A short while later, Stein crossed a nice ball which found the noggin of Dadzie but glanced a bit high of the mark.  Eastlake was also able to make some first half noise when a through ball which was pounced on by keeper Escalante squirted out of his grasp for a point-blank opportunity for the Wolves.  To everyone’s amazement, the Eastlake strike somehow flew wide and RHS miraculously escaped a first-half goal deficit.  To follow that up, another Eastlake offensive push just before the end of the half had a chance when another through ball penetrated the RHS box and the strike caromed off the post and wide.

 

Coming out of half time, RHS provided consistent pressure on the ball.  Some nice smothering D by Gordon on the wing and physical presence in the middle by Michalski resulted in a stretch of good possession for Redmond.  Eastlake was able to ask some questions with a very dangerous run down the wing, but the cross didn’t find the mark.  Another dangerous run was snuffed out by Michalski running down and sticking like glue to the Eastlake attacker.   After a number of back and forth exchanges and close calls to break the scoreless tie, Stein lobbed a ball skyward to a waiting Price on the wing who promptly spun around his defender and found daylight for a cross directly to a salivating Stein for the opening goal, 1-0 Stangs!

 

Eastlake kept searching doggedly for the equalizer.  With impressive long distance throws from the touchline, most every Wolves toss seemed like a corner kick.  With just a couple of minutes left in full time, Eastlake was able to convert on a winger’s cross into the box for the equalizer, 1-1.  Before Redmond had a chance to digest what had just happened, the Wolves capitalized on the momentum switch and struck again with a cross and header goal, 1-2 Eastlake.  In stoppage time, Redmond was pulling out all of the stops and were the recipients of a timely Eastlake handball in the box for a PK, which Stein promptly and expertly converted for the equalizer, 2-2!

 

In the first stanza of overtime, Eastlake was able to cash in on a long ball strike, catching keeper Escalante a bit too far outside to cover the ball.  2-3 Eastlake.  This result would hold as the last ditch RHS long ball attempts and Eastlake time wasting would take the remainder of the second stanza.  While the end result on this evening wasn’t what the Redmond fans were hoping for, the grit and fire shown throughout the match by the Stangs embodied the spirit of competition that all should aspire to.  Next stop, the playoffs!

 

Go Stangs!!

 

Goals:  58’ (Stein, assist Price), 80’ (Stein, PK)

JV 2019

JV Stangs falls to Issaquah Eagles 0-1 in tough top-of-the-table battle

Apr 23, 2019 – A dramatic evening at the Issaquah High School Soccer Stadium sets the stage for a bitter loss for the Stangs against a tough Eagles. 

The drama started early in the first half.  An innocuous collision in the 7th minute outside the Eagles’ penalty area between Pablo and an Issaquah defender, as they both went for the ball, resulted in a knee injury to the defender.  As the defender stayed down, it became evident that the injury was serious.  Coach Antonio, with his background in First Aid, jumped in to assist and helped determine the need for further treatment by paramedics.  The stoppage lasted around 15 minutes, and with the scheduled Seniors Night for the Eagles right after the game, the referee had to reduce the duration of the halves to 35 minutes.  

As play resumed, the evenly contested game saw action on both ends.  Goalie Nathan and the Stangs’ defense did well to contain the Eagles attack but in the 18th minute, Brandon was called for a handball in the box from an Issaquah cross.  The resulting spot kick was squeezed right inside the left post just out of reach from a diving Nathan.

Play became more physical after the goal and in the 20th minute, Cole was manhandled on the right that resulted in a shoving match between the players.  However, the referee must have seen something else on the pitch that was not evident on the footage as he awarded the freekick to Issaquah.

Things calmed down in the second half but the Stangs could not penetrate the Eagles defense for the equalizer, and the reduced time for the half worked against them also. 

With Eastlake tying Skyline 1-1 the same night, both teams now have 20 points with Eastlake in first having a better goal differential.  Issaquah is third with 19 points and Redmond rounds up the top 4 with 18 points.

The Stangs have an uphill battle as they meet rivals Eastlake (who have yet to lose a game) in a must-win final game on Tuesday to move higher than 4th place. Mathematically, the Stangs can still finish top if they beat Eastlake and both Skyline and Issaquah lose or draw their final games (to Newport and Mount Si respectively). 

Whatever the result, the boys have shown tremendous spirit and hard work in their inaugural season in 4A.  Stangs fans have enjoyed each game and truly appreciate all the effort the team had put in and are behind the Stangs 150%. Let’s all come out in force next Tuesday at our home field to cheer them on in the penultimate game of the season.  The game is at 5:30pm.  Go Stangs!!! You Can Do It!!