Peninsula Daily News
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The players wear practice gear with a motto on their shoulders that reads: “strength through unity.”
The 2014 Pirates will be unified in their goal to win another championship — and both teams will be playing under the direction of head coach Kanyon Anderson following the departure of men's head coach Andrew Chapman in July.
“I wouldn't have taken the position if I didn't have a lot of support from my coaching staff,” Anderson said.
“They know the system and know what is needed to be successful.”
That coaching staff includes Tim Tucker, Omar Anderson and Amanda Anderson, Kanyon's wife.
All of them are veterans of the Peninsula College soccer program and all have contributed to five NWAC (formerly NWAACC) championships and seven West Division titles, between the men's and women's teams, in the last four years.
“Both teams have the NWAC title as their goal,” Anderson said. “That is never easy and I think both teams are doing a good job of approaching it day by day.”
Both Peninsula teams begin the season in the National Soccer Coaches Association of American preseason junior college poll. The men are ranked ninth after finishing at No. 7 last year, while the women come in at 13th, one spot below their final ranking of 2013.
The Pirates, who last fall became the first teams in NWAC history to win men's and women's back-to-back soccer titles, open their season at the NWAC Friendlies, a 48-team tournament Tuesday and Wednesday at the Starfire Sports Complex in Tukwila.
The women open against perennial South Division power Clackamas at 10:30 a.m. Tuesday and the men then play 2011 NWAC champion Chemeketa at 2:30 p.m.
On Wednesday, the Peninsula women and men play perennial playoff contender Spokane in both games, at 10:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m.
The Pirates' home opener is set for Wednesday, Sept. 9, against Tacoma. Kickoff for the women is 2 p.m. and the men start at 4 p.m.
The Peninsula men held scrimmages against Canadian Interuniversity Sport power Victoria and also Concordia, an NAIA team out of Portland, last week. The women scrimmaged Kwantlen Polytechnic University out of the PACWEST. All three scrimmages were on the road.
“Like most preseason games, when half of the roster is comprised of freshmen, it was a bit rocky,” Anderson said of the men's and women's scrimmages.
“We know that we are building for November. It was good to see some unexpected players step up to the plate in those games.”
The Pirate women, who went 20-2-0 overall and 16-0-0 in conference last year to win their second NWAC title, graduated a cast of NWAC standouts, but return a talented and deep roster for 2014.
Playing up front at the forward position will be sophomores Laura Barrett (Sparks, Nev.), Alyssa Bertuleit (Sparks, Nev.), Larkyn Nelson (Bellingham), Mary Pierce (Beaverton, Ore.), as well as freshmen Lexi Krieger (Portland, Ore.), Paige Mahuka (Waianae, Hawaii) and Rebecca Tafte (Kingston).
The midfield will be led by sophomores Solana Ashe (Juneau, AK), Kayla Bell (Portland, Ore.), Paxton Rodocker (Port Angeles), Brenda Torres (Carson City, Nev.), and Brittney Yoshimura (Mililani, Hawaii), as well as freshmen Bianca Andrade (Forest Grove, Ore.), Taylor Berg (Bremerton), Tasha Inong (Pearl City, Hawaii), C.J. Stetser (Mililani, Hawaii), Michele Whan (Reno, Nev.) and Kennady Whitehead (Sparks, Nev.).
Defending for the Pirates will be sophomores Katelyn Raatz (Sparks, Nev.), Kamryn Barney (Snohomish) and Brooke Yoshimura (Mililani, Hawaii), and a cast of talented freshmen that includes Karen Corral (Sparks, Nev.), Tori Hagen (Reno, Nev.), Kendall Howell (Chico, Calif.), Kai Mahuka (Waianae, Hawaii) and Olivia Moore (Bremerton).
In goal for the Pirates are three experienced keepers in sophomores Emily Flinn (Forest Grove, Ore.) and Kasie Lough (Roy), and redshirt freshman Manaia Siania-Unutoa (Waipahu, Hawaii), who trained with the Pirates last year.
The Peninsula men, who went 21-0-2 and 12-0-1 last year to win their second straight NWAC title and third in four years, also will open 2014 without the NWAC's leading goal scorer and its assist leader, but they too look deep and potentially explosive.
Peninsula will be young at the forward position in 2014, with freshmen Sam McEntire (Reno, Nev.), Keo Ponce (Kapolei, Hawaii), Micah Weller (Cheney) and redshirt freshman Daniel Moss (Perth, Australia) all vying for playing time up front.
Sophomores Chris Galea (Melbourne, Australia), Caio Maciel (Salvador, Brazil), Kassio Monteiro (Sao Paulo, Brazil), Steven Rodriguez (Keizer, Ore.), Victor Sanchez (Portland, Ore.) and Keevan Webb (Victoria, B.C.) will team in the midfield with freshmen Eddie Benito (Vista, Calif.), Christopher Chertude (Beaverton, Ore.), Trevan Estrellado (Cheney) and Hector Jimenez Delgado (Portland, Ore.).
Defending for Peninsula will be sophomores Dylan Clark (Gladstone, Australia), Samuel Gaisford (London, England), Brodi Keefe (Victoria, B.C.), Hugo Marques (Sao Paulo, Brazil) and Julio Soto (Reno, Nev.), as well as freshmen Ricardo Comacho-Villa (Sun Valley, Nev.), Jacob Hogluin (Henderson, Nev.), and Emmanuel Medina (Sparks, Nev.).
The Pirates are beat up in goal with sophomore keeper Aaron Zavolokin (Central Coast, Australia) recovering from surgery and freshman keeper Nick Johnson (Hillsboro, Ore.) out with a concussion.
That leaves freshman Oscar Torres (Portland, Ore.) to learn the system and help defend Peninsula's title.