Jefferson rolls to state soccer tourney with 2-0 win


Sports editor

The Thomas Jefferson soccer team did what it was supposed to do. The Raiders downed South Kitsap Saturday afternoon, 2-0, to advance to the first round of the Class 4A state playoffs.

Senior Chris Sanders proved why he is one of the top players in the state this season with a rocket goal just 17 seconds into the second half to break a scoreless tie.

Off the second-half kickoff, Sanders blasted a shot from just over 10 yards out to beat South Kitsap goalie Jared Stevenson and give the Raiders the 1-0 lead at Spartan Stadium in Sumner. The win means the Raiders are one of 16 teams remaining in the Class 4A draw and leaves them as the only team from Federal Way left in the tournament. The two-time defending state champion Decatur Gators lost to Gig Harbor Saturday.

The Raiders took on Cascade of Everett last night at Federal Way Memorial Stadium in the first round (after press time). The winner advanced to the quarterfinals, which will be played Friday and Saturday.

“Everything is tough from now on,” Jefferson coach Darren Sawatzky said.

The pace of play Saturday against South Kitsap was tough for Jefferson. The Raiders dominated play in the first half, but didn’t have any goals to show for it.

At the half, coaches told Sanders, who will play at the University of Portland next year, to be a little bit more aggressive against the Wolves’ defense and that proved the difference with his goal.

Sanders improved his season totals to 17 goals and 12 assists when he sent midfielder Stephen Mohn on his way to the second goal in the 62nd minute. Mohn took the through ball, beat defender Hiram Davis and buried a 15-yard shot under keeper Benny Karnes. Mohn is bound for Pacific Lutheran University this fall to play soccer.

South Kitsap was the sixth-place team from the Narrows League and finished with a 10-4-4 record. Jefferson sat at 16-1-1 before last night’s game against Cascade, the No. 3 seed fom the WesCo League.

Jefferson goalkeeper Matt Anderson was solid in the net against South Kitsap – which is nothing new: The senior has 14 shutouts on the season.

Gig Harbor 3, Decatur 2

The two-time defending state champs lost the worst way a soccer team can lose – in a shootout.

After playing to a 1-1 tie at the end of regulation and two overtime sessions, the Gators and Tides went to a shootout, which Gig Harbor won 3-2 Saturday at Curtis High School at the West Central District tournament.

Gig Harbor goalkeeper Tally Hall stopped three of the final four Decatur shots to give the Tides the victory.

Decatur (12-3-3) looked to have the game won 1-0 until Gig Harbor tallied their first goal of the game with just over 11 minutes remaining in the game. Sophomore Aaron Hagman took a cross from Ryan Welander and scored past Decatur goalkeeper Kyle Bressler.

The Gators’ lone goal came off the foot of Kyle Colbath during the first half of play.

Decatur returns several players off this year’s young team, including leading scorer freshman Ciaran O’Brien.

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