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Bremerton booted late by Olympic’s Brown | Girls Soccer

Olympic’s Ali Brown drives a shot between two Bremerton defenders Tuesday night at Silverdale Stadium. Brown scored the game-winning goal in the 77th minute to give the Trojans the win. Bremerton dropped to 4-6 in league play. - Jesse Beals/staff photo
Olympic’s Ali Brown drives a shot between two Bremerton defenders Tuesday night at Silverdale Stadium. Brown scored the game-winning goal in the 77th minute to give the Trojans the win. Bremerton dropped to 4-6 in league play.
— image credit: Jesse Beals/staff photo

Last-minute goal derails upset bid; Knights lose 1-0

Bremerton coach Lance McCoy put it best.

“That’s as much a heartbreaker as I’ve been involved in in years,” McCoy said, somberly.

Olympic edged the Lady Knights soccer team 1-0 at Silverdale Stadium Tuesday, scoring in the 77th minute to break a stalemate and steal a win.

Trojan senior Ali Brown provided the back-breaker.

After Audrey Pond blasted a shot from about 15 yards out, ricocheting off BHS keeper Kristy Wood, Brown gathered possession in front of the goal and struck the ball before Wood recovered.

The goal was both sudden and stunning.

“We met in the center of the field — everybody’s pretty emotional, I’m emotional,” McCoy said of his post-game message to the players. “You look them in the eyes and tell ’em you love ’em, tell them great job. You tell them the next one is ours.”

The Trojans (11-4-0 overall, 8-2-0 league) entered the game heavy favorites, but Bremerton played like the hungrier team.

“I just felt like we controlled the second half of play,” McCoy said.

Both teams had opportunities to score, especially Olympic, which was on attack nearly the entire 40-minute first half.

“We created a lot of opportunities, especially early in the game, that we didn’t put away,” Oly coach Steve Haggerty said. “We kept pressing. I told them at halftime, ‘A tie doesn’t do us any good, we gotta go out and get a win.’”

Win they did. Barely.

“It was a great game,” Haggerty said. “Lance is such a good coach and he always has his team prepared. They probably deserved a little bit better than not to pick up a (win).”

Both McCoy and Haggerty praised Olympic junior goalkeeper Darrien Dorr for shutting the door on each Bremerton attack, giving her offense a chance to win the game on one goal.

“We pressured well down there and we had some opportunities,” McCoy said. “Darrien stepped up big, she made some big plays. That’s why she’s the league’s best goalkeeper.”

“What can you say about Darrien?” Haggerty added. “Fantastic stuff.”

Dorr credited the Trojan defense for closing on Bremerton’s crossing passes, but said making big saves is simply a see-react process.

“My defense helped out a lot, they closed down (well). That’s why they couldn’t get their crosses in, because my defense closed down,” Dorr said. “When they do go through, it’s just instincts trying to get the ball.”

As for Bremerton (4-9-1, 4-6), McCoy said the team will regroup and attempt to finish the regular season with back-to-back wins against Klahowya and North Kitsap.

“We’re working hard, we’re in the playoffs. I think we showed we can compete in the Olympic League,” he said. “The mentality is to win both games, gain some momentum going into sub- districts, and with that confidence take the game on the road.”

With five freshmen on the roster, all of whom see playing time, McCoy continues to tinker with the lineup, searching for the right roster combinations.

“We’ve mixed things around a little bit and our back line has improved dramatically. They are so confident,” McCoy said.

That confidence begins with the back line’s anchor, Wood, who shutdown a usually high-powered Olympic offense.

“She commanded the box really well tonight,” McCoy said. “I thought one well-placed shot and the game is over. Unfortunately, Olympic got that one well-placed shot.”

Brown, who typically starts at outside midfielder, was inserted into the forward position Tuesday. The choice paid off, with her tallying the winning goal.

“I thought she responded and played a pretty good game,” Haggerty said.

Bremerton, meanwhile, is optimistic despite the loss and has secured a postseason berth. With two wins to close out the season, the team would finish .500 in league play, a feat both McCoy and the players believe is attainable.

“Our kids, they’re good,” McCoy said. “You can catch fire and soccer’s funny that way.”

The Lady Knights faced Klahowya on Thursday, but results from that game were unavailable at press time. The team wraps up the season at North Kitsap Oct. 28.

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