Wildcat Soccer Team tops Greyhounds in 1st Round of State

On a gray afternoon, the Wildcat boy’s soccer team took on the Grandview Greyhounds for the first round of the 2A state tournament. Parents, siblings back from college, and classmates packed the stands in what turned out to be a typical AMHS boy’s soccer game for this year: a blowout. Every player on the roster received playing time, and the Wildcats won the game 6-1.

The first goal for the Wildcats came from junior Sam Johnson off the right side of the field, 6 minutes into the game. This was quickly followed by a goal from Isaac Feeney, also  a junior, in the 11th minute. The only other action in the first half came in the form of 2 yellow cards; one for a Greyhound and one for senior Mitchell Lovell.

The second half provided more action.

Only a minute after kickoff, senior Chase Whittaker volleyed in a beautiful goal from the top of the D-ring. In similar fashion to the first half, 5 minutes later (46′) Matt Williams (sr) bypassed 2 defenders to add one more to the scoreboard. 4-0. The next 2 goals came from Grandview, however only 1 of those goals was for their team. In the 52nd minute, Williams took another ball up top to the Greyhounds’ goal and, after shooting it, a Grandview player helped finish it into the goal. The Greyhounds did put one of their own in the AMHS net though in minute 52 after a free kick and some confusion in the box, keeping it from being another Wildcat shutout. The final goal of the game was an absolute laser by Feeney from the 20 yard line to the bottom left corner of the goal.

With a 6-1 win, the Wildcats advance to the 2A State Quarter-Finals for the 3rd year in a row.

The Wildcats are currently undefeated and have a goals for to goals against ratio of 18 to 1. That’s phenomenal, in case you were wondering.

 

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AMHS Boys Varsity Basketball: Pieces to the Puzzle 

Puzzles serve as a great metaphor for many things in life. One thing it’s particularly easy to compare a puzzle to is a sports team. Everything from the practices to who plays what position to what the coach is like comes together to form the big picture of the team or the team’s goal. Without one piece, the puzzle cannot be completed just like a team isn’t complete without all of it’s aspects.

Recently I caught up with a few members from the AMHS boys varsity basketball team to try and put together the puzzle of their team and the 2016-2017 season. Currently 4-2 in conference and 8-4 overall, the team falls second in Cascade Conference rankings to rival Kings High School, who they lost to by only 7 points last Friday night. This puzzle is about so much more than just wins and loses though, so here’s what I found out about some of the puzzle pieces helping to make the Wildcat’s click.

Practice. Junior forward Trey Miller, who has been playing basketball for 10 years, said during practice the team works on a lot of positional and individual skill work. “We spend some time on offensive and defensive sets too,” he added. Practices usually concludes with scrimmage time.

Brotherhood. Just from watching the team play together, you can tell they have a strong bond. From making jokes on the court to supporting each other from the bench, the team is visibly comfortable with each other and enjoy playing as a team. “The team is super fun to be around all the time. It’s a great group of guys,” Sam Johnson, junior guard, commented.

Coach. The Wildcats hired a new head coach this year, Anthony Slater. Slater played in college and several professional leagues; he’s spent the past few years coaching a Washington Elite AAU national team. The AMHS team had good things to say about him. “He gives us the freedom to just play basketball,” Jeric Williams, another junior guard said, “instead of giving us particular plays every time.”

Passion. “I’ve been playing basketball ever since I could remember,” Johnson said. Williams added for himself, “I love everything about the game. I love the atmosphere, the adrenaline during games, and the ability to make plays.”

The Goal. “This team is creating a new name for AMHS basketball,” Miller said. The team’s focus is to go win by win and make it to the Cascade Conference Championship, which will be happening in a few weeks. Of course, from there the goal would be to continue moving forward win by win into the post season.

And there you have it. Some of the most important pieces to this 2016-2017 AMHS boys varsity basketball team. Keep an eye out for them in the next few weeks, because I assume they’ll be doing some pretty big things.