TUMWATER – Connor Sigmon gingerly pushed himself off the turf, right wrist clutched to his chest – the result of a painful-looking spill. Some free kicks come at a price.
Despite the injury, Sigmon remained in the game.
Playing proved to be the best remedy.
Sigmon scored a pair of goals, Kevin Weyand notched his 22nd goal this season and Tumwater beat Port Angeles, 3-2, in the first round of the Class 2A state boys soccer tournament Wednesday at Tumwater District Stadium.
Tumwater, which had lost its previous five state playoff matches, including a 3-0 defeat to Archbishop Murphy in 2010, improved to 17-0-2 and advances to the state quarterfinals for the first time since 1990 when it was a 3A school.
“It feels amazing,” Sigmon said. “To be able to go farther than I did my freshman year feels great. We’ve just improved as a team all season. We do a lot of little things outside of practice that helps bring the team together. We’re very confident right now.”
Tumwater will host a quarterfinal matchup against South Puget Sound 2A runner-up Franklin Pierce on Saturday at a yet to be determined time.
The Cardinals (12-4-2) defeated Sehome, 3-2, on Tuesday in the opening round, getting a game-winning goal with 10 seconds remaining in the contest from Terell McDonald to eliminate the Mariners.
The T-Birds are 0-2 all-time in the second round, losing 1-0 to Sehome in 1989 and 4-0 to O’Dea in 1990.
Franklin Pierce is making its second consecutive quarterfinal appearance and third in four years.
The Cardinals lost to Lynden in the quarterfinals last year, 2-0.
Sigmon gave Tumwater a 1-0 halftime lead on his first goal 15 minutes into the contest.
Port Angeles defender Nicholas Ioffrida was whistled for tripping during a collision with Sigmon, giving the T-Birds a free kick from 20 yards out.
Nataniel Gunderson took the free kick, firing a laser which Port Angeles goalkeeper Jack Doryland was able to deflect, but unable to secure.
Sigmon was right there, tapping the rebound into the goal to put Tumwater on the scoreboard.
“(Gunderson) fired a great shot that (Doryland) couldn’t control,” said Sigmon, who briefly left the game following the goal to have both wrists taped. “It ended up being a pretty easy goal for me. (Doryland) wasn’t letting anything get by him so it was a big goal for us.”
It was another case of right place, right time for Sigmon on his second goal as well.
A Jacob Irwin 30-yard blast bounced off the crossbar, falling directly in front of Sigmon, who wasted little time finding the back of the net to push the T-Birds lead to 2-0 in the 68th minute.
With 8:42 remaining, the Rough Riders cut the deficit in half on a Hayden McCartney goal.
Less than two minutes later, however, Weyand’s goal re-established a two-goal lead for Tumwater.
The Rough Riders (10-5-4) added the final goal with 53 seconds remaining.
Tumwater goalkeeper Devon Dieckman, aided by a solid defensive effort, registered 11 saves, while Doryland made nine.
1A STATE PLAYOFFS
Vashon 3, Rochester 1: The Pirates built a 2-1 halftime lead, handing Rochester its second loss of the season – both coming in the playoffs – to end the Warriors’ season at 16-2.
TIMBERLINE COACH JOHN HAYES RESIGNS
After 14 years coaching boys soccer at his alma mater, Timberline coach John Hayes announced his resignation Wednesday.
Hayes said he began missing too many of his son’s and daughter’s baseball and fastpitch games while coaching the Blazers during the spring boys soccer season.
“I need to be a dad and I don’t want to miss any more stuff,” Hayes said. “It was a tough decision, but it was the right decision. (Coaching at Timberline) meant a lot to me.”
Hayes, a 1993 Timberline graduate, guided the Blazers to multiple 3A district tournament berths during his 14-year coaching tenure.
He was a starter on Timberline’s 1991 state playoff team, which was the last time the Blazers earned a state berth. This spring, he coached the Blazers to a 5-7-2 record for a fourth-place finish in the 3A Narrows League, one game out from a district playoff berth.
Hayes will continue to coach girls soccer at Rochester, where he’s been the past two fall seasons.Staff writer Meg Wochnick contributed to this report.