No. 2 Bainbridge stops No. 4 Eastside Catholic, 3-1
Sebastian Scales assisted on the go-ahead goal and also scored in a five-minute span of the second half in the Spartans' Metro League victory.
Special to The Seattle Times
SAMMAMISH — Locked in a 1-1 tie at halftime, the second-ranked Bainbridge High School boys soccer team knew it was in a battle.
With the challenge on, the Spartans came to life.
Junior midfielder Sebastian Scales assisted on the go-ahead goal and also scored in a five-minute span in the second half as Bainbridge repelled fourth-ranked Eastside Catholic 3-1 in a Metro League Mountain Division match on Friday.
Scales helped break the 1-1 tie with a precision free kick from 23 yards away. He found the head of a leaping Jesse Moore, who nudged the ball over the hands of EC goalkeeper Garrett deCilla in the 53rd minute.
"I had one earlier in the game that I shot, but this time (coach) George (Vukic) told me to put it back post, and it worked," said Scales, who has four goals and three assists this season.
"The key to this game was our team just slowing down," Scales said. "Once we calmed down and stopped playing boot ball, we waited for the perfect opportunity. We had our defenders in the box who are our best headers, and they put it away."
In the 58th minute, Scales put away a header of his own on a corner kick from junior playmaker Michael Crowley as the lead quickly grew to 3-1. It was Crowley's second assist.
The Crusaders (4-2-2 overall, 2-2-1 league) played without five starters — four to injury and one participating in a school play — and the Spartans took advantage and rode a second-half wind at their backs to victory.
"I felt like we were saving our energy for the second half, when we were going to have the wind," Scales said. "So, holding them to 1-1 (in the first half) was more than we could've asked for."
It took Bainbridge (4-1-3, 3-0-3) eight matches this season to score on a set piece, and the Spartans did it twice against Eastside Catholic.
"We have 40 free kicks or set pieces and we hadn't taken one before today," said Vukic. "We've been talking about that all year. You take those two set pieces away, even though we controlled a lot of the game and it's 1-1 or we concede one and lose. The lesson is we need to make more of our set pieces."
Bainbridge, last year's Class 3A state runner-up, took a 1-0 lead when sophomore Peter Fawley struck a beautiful left-footed shot past deCilla and into the right corner of the net in the 11th minute. Fawley hit the shot after a pass up the middle from Crowley.
Josh MacKenzie provided the 1-1 equalizer for Eastside Catholic in the 29th minute on an individual play, dribbling to the middle of the field for a low, scorching 19-yard shot. MacKenzie blistered the left-footed strike off Spartans goalkeeper Carsten Frederickson and into the middle of the net.
The Spartans outshot the Crusaders 16-9.
"That was a tough game," Vukic said. "We played some beautiful soccer tonight. We kept the ball and we made it difficult for (Eastside Catholic) to get back in the game. We were working the ball and patient. There were many good things from my guys.
"I was very anxious at half, but then we found the right formula of controlling the ball. We found a little space in there."
EC came off a 1-1 tie with O'Dea on Tuesday and a 2-1 loss to Lakeside on March 22.
"We're missing some starters, including two center midfielders, Joe Mancini and Brandon Engman," said Eastside Catholic coach Scott Brayton. "Spring break's going to hit just in time. We have concussions we can get over then. We're kind of looking forward to Metro starting after break.
"I'm looking forward to the game (against Bainbridge) over there when we have everybody back."
Bainbridge was 0-1-3 in its previous four matches, including a 1-0 loss to North Kitsap on Saturday.