Sports

Titans march on after beating Decatur

By CASEY OLSON

The Mirror

The Todd Beamer Titans are headed back to the Class 4A State Boys Soccer Tournament.

The Titans used a late Sean Davis penalty kick goal to down cross-town rival Decatur, 2-1, in a West Central District winner-to-state, loser-out game Saturday at Curtis High School.

“It is exciting, we have been able to advance further with each year of experience,” said Beamer head coach Adam Kulaas. “It is a great feeling to watch the boys improve on every level.”

In 2004, the year Beamer opened its doors, the Titans lost to eventual state champion Bellarmine Prep in overtime at West Central Districts. In 2005, Beamer lost to Stadium at districts, before playing in their first state tournament last season — losing to Auburn in the first round.

It was Davis’ goal that broke a 1-1 tie in the 67th minute. Junior John Drayer was fouled inside the penalty box by a Decatur defender, setting up Davis’ penalty-kick goal to give Beamer the victory. It was Davis’ 19th goal of the season and he is one of six seniors to play all four years Beamer has existed.

“Before the season started, we selected ‘Ab Initio’ as a credo for the 2007 season,” Kulaas said. “It is Latin for ’from the beginning’ and truly encompasses or illustrates all of the boys accomplishments. From the success on the field and class to the relationships that will honestly last a lifetime. These boys, parents, teachers and administrators and community have rallied behind the program from the beginning. They are the foundation of the Todd Beamer soccer program and will leave a legacy for future classes to build upon.”

Beamer (14-1-3) lost to Federal Way 3-2 in a shootout in the South Puget Sound League title game last week heading into districts. The Titans hosted Kamiak of Mukilteo in the first round of state last night at Sunset Chev Stadium in Sumner (after press time). The winner of the Beamer-Kamiak match will play the winner of a match between Federal Way and Evergreen (Vancouver) on either Friday or Saturday in the state quarterfinals.

“Coaches never want to lose, but a great deal of pressure accompanies an undefeated season,” Kulaas said. “They are well aware that for some of them it could be their last high school game, but that is what makes the play-offs what it is.”

After a scoreless first half, Daniel Nam gave Beamer a 1-0 lead with an unassisted goal — his 13th of the season — in the 43rd minute.

Decatur (10-5-3), which finished third in the SPSL North behind Federal Way and Jefferson, had tied the score at 1 in the 49th minute on a goal by freshman Josh Smith.

The Gators beat Emerald Ridge last week to snare the SPSL’s fifth seed under second-year head coach Justyn Scholze. Decatur returns most of its roster next season.

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