Former Hazen star now roams Liberty sidelines

April 22, 2014

Sam Bunnell, Liberty High School’s new assistant soccer coach, is no stranger to the school’s turf field.

In fact, he’s played on it quite recently. He just wasn’t playing for the home team at the time.

Sam Bunnell

Sam Bunnell

Bunnell suited up for the rival Hazen Highlanders, where just last year he starred on a team that won the Seamount League championship and earned a state tournament berth.

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Skyline’s Alex Appel preserves shutout victory

April 15, 2014

By Neil Pierson Skyline High School’s Nate Hardwick boots the ball out of danger during the first half of the Spartans’ 1-0 win against the visiting Roosevelt Roughriders on April 7.

By Neil Pierson
Skyline High School’s Nate Hardwick boots the ball out of danger during the first half of the Spartans’ 1-0 win against the visiting Roosevelt Roughriders on April 7.

Don Braman has a conundrum most soccer coaches would love to have — three quality goalkeepers and only one starting spot.

Senior Jack O’Keefe and junior Brice Escobar are the most experienced players fighting for time, but sophomore Alex Appel has been just as good during the Skyline Spartans’ nine-game unbeaten streak to start the season.

Appel came in for the second half and made three crucial saves in the last 15 minutes, helping Skyline beat the visiting Roosevelt Roughriders, 1-0, in Class 4A KingCo Conference boys soccer action April 7.

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Liberty, Mount Si play to scoreless tie

April 15, 2014

The last time the Liberty High School boys soccer team set foot on Mount Si’s home turf, they left as KingCo champions with a direct berth into the state tournament.

The Patriots returned April 9, and while the league title wasn’t directly on the line, the two were still battling to top the conference standings at the season’s midpoint.

By Christina Corrales-Toy Colton Ronk (left), Liberty High School senior midfielder, looks on as Colton Oord, Mount Si junior defender, heads the ball away from the Wildcats’ goal during the second period of their April 9 soccer match.

By Christina Corrales-Toy
Colton Ronk (left), Liberty High School senior midfielder, looks on as Colton Oord, Mount Si junior defender, heads the ball away from the Wildcats’ goal during the second period of their April 9 soccer match.

Liberty was able to maintain its place atop the conference, after the teams, both considered among the best in the state, played to a scoreless draw.

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Soccer club partners with Swedish/Issaquah

April 15, 2014

Swedish/Issaquah announced a new partnership with the Issaquah Soccer Club Gunners, making it the youth soccer organization’s title sponsor.

As part of the agreement, Swedish will provide team uniform kits, medical support for events and tournaments, and organize education programs for parents and coaches on important topics such as youth sports injury and prevention, and concussion awareness.

“We are impressed by the commitment of ISC Gunners to introduce young athletes to sports while instilling the virtues of teamwork, discipline and fitness,” Dr. Rayburn Lewis, Swedish/Issaquah’s chief executive, said in a news release.

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Caged Panthers

March 25, 2014

Matthew Richardson, Jason Twaddle score in Skyline soccer 2-1 win over Wenatchee

By Neil Pierson A Skyline High School wall of defenders successfully block a first-half free kick during a March 18 game against the Wenatchee Panthers. Skyline won, 2-1.

By Neil Pierson
A Skyline High School wall of defenders successfully block a first-half free kick during a March 18 game against the Wenatchee Panthers. Skyline won, 2-1.

Matthew Richardson isn’t tall, but he might have been the biggest player on the field for the Skyline High School last week.

Richardson scored the Spartans’ first goal, then assisted on Jason Twaddle’s tally midway through the second half as Skyline held off the Wenatchee Panthers, 2-1, in a March 18 nonleague boys soccer match at Spartan Stadium.

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Despite new pieces, hopes remain high

March 25, 2014

Boys soccer preview

It might not be realistic for the Skyline High School boys soccer team to repeat their success of 2013, when the Spartans, undefeated in conference, play for the first time.

After all, the Spartans will have to find replacements for several key seniors who graduated, including starting center backs Ryan Shim and Chris Sorenson, and all-state central midfielder Kaleb Strawn.

The Spartans finished 13-3 overall and reached the Class 4A state tournament last season, where they lost 1-0 to Camas in the first round. Head coach Don Braman acknowledges the challenge of finding new stars, but thinks the pieces are in place for similar levels of success.

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Liberty boys hope to recapture lighting in a bottle

March 18, 2014

The pressure is on for the Liberty High School boys soccer team.

After the school’s girls team brought home the state championship, the way junior captain Ryan Graham sees it, it’s the boys’ turn to collect some hardware.

“They have their trophy, now we want to have our trophy,” he said. “That would be fantastic for the school.”

By Greg Farrar Tyler Jensen, fighting for the ball against Mercer Island during a 2013 soccer match, returns as a junior to this year’s Liberty High School soccer team.

By Greg Farrar
Tyler Jensen, fighting for the ball against Mercer Island during a 2013 soccer match, returns as a junior to this year’s Liberty High School soccer team.

That’s the message behind this season’s team motto, “BTH,” which stands for “Bring This Home.”

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Top sports stories of the year

December 31, 2013

Issaquah athletes take top state honors

It was another successful year for Issaquah community sports.

By Greg Farrar The Liberty High School girls soccer team exults with the state 3A championship trophy Nov. 23 after beating the Kamiakin Braves, 2-1, in Puyallup.

By Greg Farrar
The Liberty High School girls soccer team exults with the state 3A championship trophy Nov. 23 after beating the Kamiakin Braves, 2-1, in Puyallup.

Athletes at the three district high schools took home conference titles and state championships, while an Issaquah racing team made a splash on the water.

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Former Issaquah soccer star named All-American

December 31, 2013

Kristin Maris, a former Issaquah High School soccer star, was named a second-team 2013 National Soccer Coaches Association of America/NCAA Division II Scholar All-American.

A behavioral neuroscience major and chemistry minor, Maris, a senior, maintains a 3.81 grade point average.

Earlier, she was named a second-team College Sports Information Directors of America Capital One Academic All-American, a first-team College Division District 8 Academic all-star and for the third straight year, a Great Northwest Athletic Conference academic all-star.

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After two devastating injuries, Issaquah junior Devan Talley has dream season

December 3, 2013

After her first serious knee injury at age 14, Devan Talley remained determined.

After her second one, on her opposite knee, Talley felt the universe was picking on her.

By Greg Farrar Devan Talley, Issaquah High School junior forward, plays in the state 4A girls soccer championship Nov. 23 in Puyallup, during which she scored for an early 1-0 lead against Central Valley.

By Greg Farrar
Devan Talley, Issaquah High School junior forward, plays in the state 4A girls soccer championship Nov. 23 in Puyallup, during which she scored for an early 1-0 lead against Central Valley.

But Talley, a junior forward playing her first season for the Issaquah High School girls soccer team, is now the leader of an Eagles team that finished second in the 4A state championship.

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