Jordan Zimmerman remembers when the Pavilion at The Evergreen State College was converted into a soccer arena — he helped lay the turf. He’s continued to spread turf seed at the college’s small indoor practice facility since.
His older brother, Jake, still paints the lines on the field.
Long before the Zimmerman brothers were cornerstones of the Geoducks men’s soccer team, which has started the season 4-0-2 (3-0-2 Cascade Collegiate Conference), they were a part of its culture.
Their father, Steve, was an assistant coach when their uncle, Tom Boatright, was the program’s head coach. Both of the Zimmermans’ parents played soccer at Evergreen, as did their cousin, Nate Boatright. Their younger brother, Alec, plays for Sounders Academy.
“We would actually go out and play at the Pavilion together,” Jake Zimmerman said. “… We would all go kick it around as a family.”
Jake, a junior at Evergreen, and Jordan, a sophomore, played one year together at Capital High School. This is the second season the brothers have played together for the Geoducks.
“He’s been really fun to play with. He’s always whipping a good ball into the box for me,” Jordan Zimmerman said.
Evergreen — which set a program record for winning percentage at 13-3-2 (.778) in 2015 — lost several prolific scorers from last year’s squad after advancing to the semifinals of the CCC championships in Springfield, Oregon.
“Last year, there was a feeling that we were the better team in almost every game because of talented players,” Jordan Zimmerman said. “Now, it’s buying into a different mentality. We might not be the most talented team in the conference, so we have to work harder and work for each other.”
Both Zimmerman brothers have emerged as key role players for the Geoducks. Jake, a midfielder, is a linchpin of Evergreen’s attack and has three assists. Jordan, a defender, has connected for three goals — tied for best on the team.
“He has taken ownership and is dominant in the air,” Evergreen coach John Purtteman said. “All three of his goals are headers off of set pieces. Two of those assists are from Jake, who serves up as good a ball as anyone in the conference.
“Jake is a really good student of the game. He’s very technical and knows Jordan is one of his top targets.”
The Zimmerman brothers have logged time in each of the Geoducks’ six matches — Jordan has started all six and has recorded 554 minutes, while Jake has contributed 349.
“We’re playing more as a team, without individuals that score a bunch of goals,” Jake Zimmerman said. “As a team, we’re all having to contribute more.”
Purtteman said the graduation of several players from last year’s squad — like Nate Boatright and Willie Spurr, who were National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics men’s soccer All-America honorable mention — has pushed the Zimmermans to the forefront.
“There were some departures of very strong players, so there was an opportunity,” Purtteman said. “They’ve taken advantage of those opportunities.”
SMU RUNNER LAUDED
Saint Martin’s University cross country runner Shannon Porter was named the Great Northwest Athletic Conference athlete of the week on Monday. This is the second consecutive week and third time this season that Porter has received the award.
Porter won her third race of the season Saturday at the 42nd Charles Bowles Willamette Invitational in Salem, Oregon. She finished the 5,000-meter course in 17 minutes, 6.7 seconds.