Two Mount SI grads star in season for the books at NU
November 21, 2012
By Sebastian Moraga
They had never beat Concordia. They had never won a regular season championship. And they had started their 2012 preseason losing seven of nine matches.
The 2012 season for Kirkland’s Northwest University womens soccer team, and for its two Snoqualmie Valley standouts Jessie Oliver and Jordyn Wilson, went from unfathomable to unforgettable.
The team built a storybook season on the back of an improbable streak after the string of losses.
The team started its regular season with a loss and a tie, and then did not lose again until the final game of the conference playoffs, nine matches later.
“We were up 1-0, and with five minutes left they tied, and they won in overtime,” Wilson said, referring to the Cascade Collegiate Conference’s soccer powerhouse from Oregon: Concordia University.
Concordia then won its next match, and qualified for nationals in Alabama.
To think that NU, a 7-year-old program, fell just five minutes short from playing for a nationals berth is no small feat, she said.
“I’m really proud of the team,” she said.
One reason for the poor preseason record was the caliber of rivals scheduled, Wilson said. Nationally ranked teams and NCAA Division II teams proved tough for the small private school from Kirkland.
Still, the defeats galvanized the team, Wilson added.
“It’s one of those seasons where everyone thought it was going to go one way because of what happened in preseason, but we made a decision to turn it around and made a name for ourselves,” she said.
Despite the early exit from the playoffs, Wilson called the 2012 campaign “the perfect senior season,” with the regular season crown and the victory against Concordia glued in her mind as well.
Not even her fifth concussion, sustained during the regular season finale against Warner Pacific, diminished her enthusiasm for the game.
“I’m really sad that it’s over. I want to keep playing,” she said.
A defensive center midfielder, she had Oliver as a starting teammate for every game but one, the game after the concussion, where Wilson only played for 10 minutes as a sub. She still managed to get a shot off in the 2-1 victory against Oregon Tech in the first round of playoffs.
The shot went off the post, Wilson said with a chuckle.
Wilson calls Oliver — a former teammate at Mount Si — her best friend. She said she convinced Oliver to transfer to Northwest from Bellevue College in 2011. Any time they passed each other the ball, they would call it “The North Bend Connection.”
“It was really fun playing with her this year,” Wilson said of Oliver, a music major known to perform the National Anthem at Eagle events.
A secondary education major, Wilson said she might try playing indoor soccer next. She sounds more certain about coaching in high school than playing again.
“I love high school soccer,” she said.
If Wilson had Oliver around during the past two years as fellow Wildcats, her future may also have a feline growl to it.
“Darren Brown wants me to join the coaching staff next year,” she said, referring to the longtime Mount Si High School coach. “I really want to do that.”
Brown confirmed the hire via email. Nov. 19.
Wildcat or Eagle, Wilson said that next year she will feel a part of whatever success comes NU’s way.
“We are a pretty new program and people didn’t even pronounce our name right, ‘Northwestern,’” she said. “And this year, we got our name in the national rankings. It’s pretty cool, because I feel like we built the foundation.”