Oak Harbor battles talented Panthers

Losing by a 4-0 score in soccer could make some fans think the game was nothing more than a walkaway.

However, Thursday’s WesCo North matchup between the Wildcats and Snohomish on a cold and windy night at Wildcat Memorial Stadium was anything but a blowout victory for the Panthers.

Oak Harbor came to play and the team played hard, and coach Steve Barker said if it hadn’t been for a couple of mistakes, the score could just as easily have been 1-0.

“Those two goals in the second half made the game look like a walkaway, but it was far from that,” Barker said.

Thomas Sheets had a big game, scoring all four goals for Snohomish.

The junior forward scored at the 34-minute mark, taking a feed from Diego Robayo and beating Wildcats’ net minder Jack O’Neil with the shot, and made the score 2-0 a minute later off a pass from Jackson Miller.

Holding a 2-0 halftime lead, Sheets scored his third goal 17 minutes into the second half and hit the capper at the 62-minute mark.

O’Neil played a great game in goal for Oak Harbor and earned praises from his coach.

“He played a wonderful game for us,” Barker said. “He hasn’t spent a lot of time as a goal keeper and his inexperience showed on a couple of goals they scored, but he is a quality player who is only going to get better.”

O’Neil turned back several shots from point-blank range in the second half.

Barker said his two strikers, Greg Wolfe and Kevin Flavin, also played an excellent game.

“We had several opportunities that we should have finished, but we couldn’t quite get the job done,” Barker said. “We are going to win the next time we play them.”

The Wildcats’ next home game is at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday against Stanwood.

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