Sports

How far will they go?

Bremerton defender Ritchie Danskin (6) closes in on Olympic’s Levi Hay in Tuesday’s 4-3 overtime loss to the Trojans. - Photo by Wesley Remmer
Bremerton defender Ritchie Danskin (6) closes in on Olympic’s Levi Hay in Tuesday’s 4-3 overtime loss to the Trojans.
— image credit: Photo by Wesley Remmer

By WESLEY REMMER

Staff writer

Bremerton soccer coach Randy Lund sets the bar high. Success is a product of expectations and Lund doesn’t hope for the best out of his 2008 varsity squad — he expects it.

“My expectations are to make a run at the playoffs,” Lund said Wednesday before a team practice. “I set the bar high and we’ll see how close we can make it.”

The Knights ended the ‘07 campaign with a 6-10-0 overall record, missing the playoffs by a couple games. And the team has struggled in each of the past three years, posting sub-.500 records every season.

“We haven’t had a winning season my entire career,” junior goalkeeper Brendon Stebor said. “This year, we’re just looking for wins.”

And Lund — in his first year at the helm — will seek to right the ship.

The Knights are off to a 1-3 start, losing a 4-3 overtime heartbreaker Tuesday against Olympic League rival Olympic High School.

BHS fell behind early, 2-0, but rallied in the second half, knotting the game 2-2. Each team then tallied a third goal late, including BHS senior captain Francisco Garcia’s equalizer in the 78th minute.

“They played well,” Lund said of his players. “We were behind 2-0, but fought back.”

Olympic escaped with the victory on an overtime goal. It was the first win of the season for the Trojans.

“I was expecting to come away with a win,” Lund said of Tuesday’s game. “I certainly want to improve on that.”

Oly forward Cody Clark proved the difference Tuesday, netting two goals for the Trojans. Clark cracked the BHS defense all night, which struggled to keep its back line in tact.

“We’re going to have to do a better job of shutting him down next time we play (Olympic),” Lund said. “I want to solidify our defense. We’ve had a few holes we need to shore up.”

The Knights had little trouble finding the net as Garcia — the team’s leading scorer last year — ran his season goal total to four.

“We’ve been doing alright attacking,” Lund said.

And while the Knights aren’t off to the start they wanted, the team remains optimistic.

“Although we lost to CK and Olympic, we played our hearts out,” Stebor said. “We’re looking up.”

Now the Knights will look to Garcia and fellow captains, junior Alex Membrere and senior Ritchie Danskin, for team leadership as the season heats up.

“It’s good. I like it,” Garcia said of his role as captain. “I push my teammates to play better, and (I) play harder for them.”

And Garcia said regardless of the outcome, the Knights will remain a single, unified team.

“We win as a team, we lose as a team,” he said.

Olympic League play continued Thursday as BHS hosted Peninsula. Results were not available at press time. The Knights host Port Angeles at 6:45 p.m. Tuesday, then travel to Port Townsend for a 6:45 p.m. game Thursday.

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