Members of the WHS girls soccer team, the 1996 Kingco champions, proudly display crowns signifying their achievement.
by Jason Longley
The scoreboard at Pop Keeney Stadium displayed a score of 42-7 at the half last Saturday when the Falcons' girls soccer team proudly jogged onto the field. They, along with members of other Woodinville fall sports teams, were honored in front of thousands of fans.
Pride, rather than disappointment at their loss earlier that day, shown in the eyes of the girls soccer team on the field. School pride towards the football team and pride of the great season that they had was evident.
The Falcons' girls soccer team had an outstanding season this year and finished with a combined record of 14-3-1. Last Saturday, at Sparks Stadium, they fought it out against Decatur until the last second, like they did all season long. It took a goal in the last minute of overtime on the part of the Gators to defeat the Falcons. Prior to overtime, the Falcons had scored off of a Kinsey McCormick goal in the last period which tied up the game at 1-1.
The team went further than many thought possible, due to the injuries incurred upon First Team All Kingco players Megan Gaz and Dee Behler. However, the Falcons united, and many players made sacrifices to get the team into the playoffs.
"It was a real achievement. All the players pulled together," said Coach Hester. Of these sacrifices, the most prevalent would have to be the ones made on the parts of seniors Heather Hartstein and Tricia Gordon. Heather, a First Team All Kingco forward, moved to midfielder, formerly Dee Behler's position. Tricia, another First Team All Kingco player, switched from midfield to defender.
Perhaps their standout accomplishment of the year was a 1-0 win over Eastlake at Pop Keeney to claim the Kingco title. A Vanessa Pierce goal, assisted by Amanda Lim off of a corner kick with minutes left in the game, lifted the Falcons in flight into the playoffs. Coach Hester has started designing the Kingco Champion t-shirts which will proudly bear Woodinville's name.
A convincing 5-2 victory over Oak Harbor in the first round playoffs last Tuesday moved the Falcons into the quarterfinals where they played Decatur. Among the scorers, Tracy Smith was the standout with three goals. Had they won, the Falcons would have gone to the semi-finals, and with a win there, they would have advanced to the state championship game. Although the loss to Decatur is a disappointment, the players and Coach Hester all feel that the season was a success. "We've got the Kingco title even if we lose," Coach Hester said prior to Saturday's game.
Next year should be a good one for the Falcons' girls soccer team. Of the players who started at the end of the season, only four were seniors. Coach Hester and the players, including the seniors, think that next year's team will be a top contender for the Kingco title.
The Falcons' football team continues its quest for the state championship with their first round playoff win against Kentridge on Saturday night. Although the girls soccer team is out of the race, you can be assured that they will be behind Falcon Football 'till the very end, just like Falcon Football was behind them throughout their season.