North Bend soccer teams fight for entry to state’s final four
November 21, 2012
By Sebastian Moraga
Oh, how sweet — and sour — it is to make it to state.
The Sweet and Sour, the nickname for the soccer squad otherwise known as FC North Bend Girls U-14 Smothers R1 Recreational, earned a berth in the Washington State Youth Soccer Association state tourney for the second consecutive year.
The team went 9-1 in the season, scoring 29 goals and allowing seven. They finished first in the league for the fourth year in a row.
In the district title game Nov. 18, the team lost to the Daredevils from Bothell in a penalty shootout. Three in-game shots and two penalty kicks for the Sweet and Sour hit the post.
“We dominated the team probably 80-20, but we couldn’t put the ball in the net,” Mike Smothers, the team’s head coach said.
He had high praise for his opponents and for his kickers, whom he said remained calm during the penalty shootout.
“I told them to keep a song in their heads,” Smothers said. “So, there they were, kicking penalty kicks and saying nursery rhymes.”
Newcomer Jamie Krueger loved being part of the team, penalty shootout and all.
“Last year, my team didn’t make it this far, so it was really fun,” said Krueger, a defender whose 2011 team disbanded.
“It was really exciting, not nerve-wracking but fun,” she said of the game against Bothell. “It was really great.”
The Sweet and Sour — so named after the lime green color of their uniforms years ago — still qualified to state as the wildcard.
The next game is Dec. 1 in Lacey against a local team named The Wild Things. It’s the second consecutive year the team will make it to state.
Besides The Wild Things and Sweet and Sour, six more teams made it to the Dec. 1 round.
The four winning teams play Dec. 8 at Tukwila’s Starfire Soccer Complex. The winners play the next day in the finals.
“It’s going to be tough,” Krueger said. “We are really going to have to prove that we deserve to be there.”
The team will be up to it, Smothers said.
“The girls just work hard,” he said.
The team has a core of about eight girls who have been playing together for about six to seven years, and four more who have been playing for about four, Smothers said.
“We’ve played in the top division in the last couple of years, and the people who come in the team know what they are getting themselves into,” Smothers said.
Sarah Panciroli, another newcomer, agreed.
“Once I came in, I felt like everyone was really focused and committed to the team,” she said, “and it was really fun to be in it.”
Krueger said adapting to the team has been easy.
“Everybody is so nice,” she said. “So welcoming. I really enjoy playing on this team.”
With state around the corner, having everyone play at her best would be reward enough, Panciroli said.
“Even though,” she added, “it’s really fun to win.”
Sebastian Moraga: 392-6434, ext. 221, or firstname.lastname@example.org.