‘Cats trimmed 2-1 on wet night

A spray of water flys from Oak Harbor midfielder Greg Wolfe’s head as he makes a pass in the driving rain during the WesCo North match.  - Jim Woolbright/Whidbey News-Times
A spray of water flys from Oak Harbor midfielder Greg Wolfe’s head as he makes a pass in the driving rain during the WesCo North match.
— image credit: Jim Woolbright/Whidbey News-Times

More than 24 hours of steady rain made the playing surface at Wildcat Memorial Stadium better suited for water polo when the Oak Harbor High School soccer team hosted Snohomish in a Wednesday WesCo North match. In addition to the wet, the hardy Wildcats and Panthers also had to battle chilly temperatures and strong eastern winds that didn’t abate.

The league-leading Panthers (5-1-1) managed to score a pair of goals in the first half of the match and held off a late Wildcat surge to come away with a 2-1 victory.

After a 2-0 road win over Cascade Monday evening, the Wildcat record was evened at 3-3 in the WesCo North.

“I don’t know what to say,” coach Steve Barker said after the match. “Jack O’Neil is a good player and he did a good job in goal tonight. We have a lot of good players on this team.”

Thomas Sheets tallied the first goal for Snohomish three minutes into the match when he trickled a shot past O’Neil for a 1-0 lead.

The Wildcat defense went to work after that point and held the Panthers at bay until Travis Olson, off a Sheets assist, scored on a low crossing shot from the left side just before halftime.

Weather conditions didn’t improve in the second half, but players on both teams continued to play their hearts out.

Oak Harbor’s Kevin Flavin gave the chilled crowd something to warm their hearts when he scored with 13 minutes remaining in the contest.

Snohomish made an errant pass in front of the net that the Wildcat senior picked off, and beat Panther keeper Cody Melander with a shot in the lower right corner of the net to make the score 2-1.

Oak Harbor kept the pressure on and most of the remaining minutes of the contest were played on the Snohomish half of the field, but the Wildcats were unable to tally the tying goal.

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