Soccer ball at Civic Stadium. File Photo: Doug Lange
2A State Soccer: Sehome & Toppenish Semifinal Ready
May 24, 2019
Heading into the 2A state semifinal, the Sehome boys soccer team is on a roll. They haven't lost a match in over two months. They've outscored their opponents 61-to-13 and registered 12 shutouts.
Can they keep it going for two more games?
The Mariners will find out Friday at 6:00pm when they square off against Toppenish at Sunset Chev Stadium in Sumner. 17-1-3 Sehome will battle an equally hot squad in the 16-3-1 Wildcats.
Toppenish has won 12 straight matches, last losing on March 26th. They have outscored their opponents 60-15 and are very motivated making their first appearance in the semifinals since 2014. Whatcom County soccer fans take note, the Wildcats were shutout 5-0 by the eventual champion in Squalicum that year.
Sehome coach Richard Henderson says he's counting on everybody from the spine of his team in goalkeeper Mason Kealy to forward Morgan Antico to stay in front of a Toppenish squad that features high scoring forward Moises Mancillas, who led the Yakima Valley with 25 goals.
"They're a lot more direct than what we're used to, but effective and they've got some standout players 1-v-1 in the wide areas. We're going to have to defend 1-v-1 and get help wherever we need it," says Henderson. "I think if we concentrate on being the best version of what we do, we'll be fine."
MORE: Listen to our interview with Sehome coach Richard Henderson
Sehome is looking to win their third state championship and first since 2008.
The other semifinal features Fife going up against the defending state champs in Columbia River. Henderson says he's not thinking ahead to any possible championship match on Saturday. He told his squad to stay focused on simple solutions to get a win over Toppenish.
"Just do our job and the reality is the games going to be won or lost inside the penalty box," said Henderson.
The 2A state championship game is Saturday night at 5pm back at sunset Chev Stadium. The 3rd/4th place match is earlier at 12:00pm.
- Doug Lange