PORT ANGELES — The Peninsula women had a chance to seize first place in the North, but the Cardinals, who have only allowed five goals all year, are a tough defensive team that the Pirates just couldn’t quite crack.
“We’re disappointed in the draw, but we thought we had our chances,” said Peninsula women’s coach Kanyon Anderson. “They [Skagit Valley] were maybe playing a bit for the draw toward the end of the game.”
Anderson said it’s a bit odd for the Pirates (4-0-2) players to be in second place this late into the season despite not losing a game all year. But, with two draws, the Pirates continue to be behind Skagit Valley (5-0-1).
“We can win out, but Skagit has the inside track [for the North Region title],” Anderson said. Peninsula does finish the season on Oct. 25 with a game at Skagit Valley.
Anderson said he would be upset if the Pirates weren’t creating any scoring chances, but they were and the shots simply didn’t go in. Peninsula has scored just one goal in back-to-back draws, after scoring 47 goals in four games prior. Anderson likened scoring goals to shooting in basketball, where even good shooters go through dry spells, but have to continue shooting knowing that eventually the ball will go in.
The Pirates thought they had a goal in the ninth minute from Briana-Jean Tanaka, but it was waived off for offsides. Though it was early in the, that ended up being a critical call as it was the only time the ball went into the net all night.
Seven minutes later, the Pirates nearly had a gorgeous goal on a corner kick. Tanaka took the corner and it was headed by Caneel Corpuz to Shawna Larson, who headed it to the goal. Skagit’s keeper Zoe Crawford was alert to the double deflection and was just barely able to get her hands on the ball to prevent a goal.
The Cardinals only had a couple of real scoring chances all game. One came early, in the 14th minute, when one of their forwards got in behind the Pirates’ defense. Goalkeeper Talia Marina had to come way out of goal and race to the ball, barely beating the Skagit player, to gather it in to prevent a shot. Skagit’s other good chance came on a scary corner kick in the 65th that skittered through several players from both teams but no one got a foot on it.
Peninsula came out with a lot of energy in the second half as Port Angeles High grad Anna Petty was put into the game and she made several strong runs to create chances. Petty had one good chance with a hard, high shot that Crawford was able to just get her hands on.
Peninsula(4-0-2, 9-0-2) next plays at Everett (3-2-1, 3-4-1) on Oct. 4.