It was a seesaw game if ever there was one. The Woodinville Falcons trailed Bothell 2-1 in the second half, rallied to take a 3-2 lead, then surrendered a goal in the final minute of regulation to force overtime.
After two scoreless overtimes, the game was declared a tie. As of this writing, Woodinville is 4-3-1 while Bothell is to 3-2-3.
“Honestly, I couldn’t be happier,” Woodinville’s Nikki Zaback said. “Our team came together. It’s the best I’ve seen us play together. I saw fight and heart today. We went after the ball in the air and we wanted it more than them.”
The latter stages of the match featured frustration from the Woodinville sideline. Coach Andrew Croft gave referees an earful.
“We’ve got to keep our cool on the sideline,” Croft said. “But at the same time it seems that we don’t agree with what goes on. I don’t want to speak in terms of fairness, but we want to make sure that [the officials] are looking at both sides of the coin.”
Croft singled out two players of whom he was proud.
“Tonight we had a couple players come in who haven’t played a ton of minutes with Claire Steele and Alexa Hildebrand,” he said. “They came in and played fantastic. We were happy with how they learned and adapted quickly. We want to be a team that is not just strong defensively, but is able to play out of the back [end]. Every team we play against, our ability to break their pressure allows us to continue to score. And it gives players the opportunity to play the game at a little higher level.”
Nikki Zaback was fully optimistic.
“I think it clicked tonight,” she said. “And from here on I think it’s only going to get better.”
Woodinville plays at Newport this Tuesday and at Eastlake on Thursday.
After the game, senior Karoline Wucherer had to be carted off the field after being struck in the back of the head. For precautionary reasons, she was transported to Evergreen Hospital. “I think she’s doing okay,” Croft said. “She got roughed up in there. Her heart and fight have been fantastic. She hasn’t been getting the minutes she thinks she deserves. I’ve got to love her fight to get those minutes. And she proved tonight with her fight that she deserved those minutes.”