Girls’ Varsity Soccer Suffers a Tough Loss Against Eastlake

Ryan Heuchert, Staff Writer

 On Thursday night, Issaquah’s varsity girls’ soccer team played against the Eastlake Wolves. The Eagles did their best to work as a team, and fight fatigue. Even though they played hard and came close to scoring on multiple occasions, the ending result was a loss for the Eagles at 3-0. 

The first half of the game presented multiple promising plays. Senior Shelby Runje played aggressively, almost scoring several goals. Freshman Ella Benders was a defensive wall that proved hard to penetrate. She led the defense in repelling several attempted goals by Eastlake. The Issaquah girls verbally communicated with one another and made several well calculated passes. Unfortunately, their opponents were just as aggressive and proficient. Eastlake was able to score within the first 10 minutes of the match. By the second half of the game, the Eagles were exhausted. The fatigue kicked in and teamwork broke down, but several players, like Runje, continued to make great plays. Another factor that did not work in their favor was Eastlake’s goalie, Lou Champoux-Roberts. Champoux-Roberts was quick with her feet, catching several attempted shots at the goal. A player on the team, sophomore Abigail Cameron says, “The team played how they needed to play. We just could not finish.”  

When the game had concluded, all the girls were disheveled with their performance, some even in tears. In fact, when asking players if they were willing to be interviewed, almost all of them said they did not want to talk at that moment. Coach Jaci Matthews believes the Eagles played assertively but could have used more teamwork: “We started off strong, we tried to possess the ball and play our own brand of soccer. Unfortunately, they got a couple goals on us, and we did not pull together as a group.”  

Although the coaches and players had high emotion, no one was as passionate as the audience. Supporters of both Eastlake and Issaquah could be heard shouting their approval or disapproval of the referee’s decision to penalize certain actions throughout the game. Members of the audience also yelled out words of encouragement.  

Despite a devastating loss, the soccer season for the girls’ varsity team is not over yet. They still have four games to play and win. Defense player and junior Finley Kirchoff says the game last night was a “tough loss, but I think we can bounce back.” Coach Matthews adds, “We know what we are capable of as a group…. I think it is just trying to get back to what was making us successful.”  

Last night’s game was not the team’s proudest moment, but there are certainly shining moments still present on the path for the Issaquah varsity girls’ soccer team.