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!!