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Posted: February 19, 2017 7:10 p.m.

Eastside soccer splits with Walnut Grove Friday, shows promise for 2017 season

Brian Worton | The Covington News/

Members of the Eastside boys soccer team celebrate after a goal during Friday's win.

Eastside girls fall in dramatic fashion to Walnut Grove

 

     As the Eastside Girls soccer team looked to gain some momentum in the early stages of the season, a solid performance against Walnut Grove was crucial. But a winning result could not be attained by the Lady Eagles, as Walnut Grove defeated Eastside 3-2 Friday night.

     Seven minutes into the game, it seemed like the match would be fairly even, but Walnut Grove struck first blood with an impressive shot that just curled under the cross bar. With Walnut Grove winning by one goal early on in the first half, Eastside found some momentum and managed to tie the game with a delightful chip over Walnut Grove’s keeper.

      With the game all square to start the second half, Walnut Grove seemingly took control in the beginning stages of the second half taking a 2-1 lead with a lofted shot floating just over the gloves of Eastside’s goal keeper.

The Eastside girls, however, disrupted the flow of the game with an impressive run by Eastside’s Malaya Yamasaki who slotted the ball into the bottom corner of Walnut Grove’s net.

      In what looked like a carbon copy of their second goal, Walnut Grove scored off of a terrific shot into the roof of the net, and with just minutes remaining in the game, Eastside had an opportunity to tie it again with a cross into the box that was parried by Walnut Grove’s goal keeper, but there were no Eastside players in sight to take on the crucial tap in, resulting in the final score.

The Lady Eagles will look to bounce back next with a matchup with cross-town rival Newton on Feb. 28. See more about Eastside and all of our girls’ soccer teams in Part Two of our Spring Sports Preview in next Sunday’s print edition of The Covington News. 

Eastside boys show case their talent in win over Walnut Grove 

      After opening up the 2017 season with a competitive loss at No. 2 Johnson last week, the Eastside boys soccer team netted its first win of the season with a 2-1 victory over Walnut Grove Friday night.

The Eagles were looking to continue their solid run of form, beginning with last week’s performance, which coach Champ Young called very inspiring, and a game against a solid Walnut Grove side provided them with a great opportunity to show what the Eagles have in store for this season.

      A tidy finish by Eastside’s Kade Mote saw Eastside take an important lead just 35 seconds into the game, but their celebrations were cut short with Walnut Grove leveling the game just one minute after with a score of its own.

As both sides were eager to take control of the game, both sides came upon multiple opportunities to score, nonetheless, the first half ended 1-1.

      19 minutes into the second half, Eastside had an opportunity to take the lead, as Walnut Grove fouled in dangerous territory, giving Eastside a free kick with the threat of scoring. Eastside capitalized on the chance with a clever run over the ball by Billy Love, who just signed a soccer scholarship with Point University this past Tuesday. Love left the shot up to Eastside sophomore Jackson Jolley who struck the ball perfectly past the wall as well as the keeper, providing the final score.

            Earlier in the week, Young seemed to foreshadow such a performance from his team, calling it one of his deepest squads in his six years as head coach.

 

            “There have been times in years past where we had to recruit other athletes from around the school to fill some holes,” Young said. “But, no. This year we don’t have to do that. We are very deep and have legitimate soccer players who can fill ever position.”

 

            Young said he likes the chances of his team being able to do something that an Eastside boys soccer team has never done – make it past the second round of the state tournament. 

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