The end of things is often hard, and that was the case last Saturday morning in Maple Valley. The Woodinville Falcons, just two steps from the State title game, saw their season end in a 11-8 loss to the Tahoma Bears. It was a quarterfinal game played at Maple View Middle School.
“We just gave up the third quarter, I think they went on a 3-0 run,” Woodinville coach Pete Crowley said. “We came out in the fourth [quarter] and fought back as best we could. We told the boys we don’t need to be perfect in this game, we can make mistakes -- but we need to be darn near perfect.... The bounces didn’t go their way and that was the difference maker.”
The Falcons got off to a good start, taking a 3-2 lead into the second quarter. But with 3:52 left in the third quarter, Tahoma’s Cam Bentley scored to give the Bears a 7-5 advantage. There was a palpable shift in momentum with that goal.
“We've always had rough third quarters throughout the season,” Woodinville Max Van Winkle said. “I don’t know what happens at halftime.”
Woodinville closed the deficit to 9-7 in the fourth quarter. But Tahoma’s Joe Connelly scored a key goal to keep the Falcons at arm’s length.
With 2:06 left, Woodinville’s Nolan Downs scored to make it an 11-8 game. But that was all she wrote. The clock hit 0:00 and Tahoma players celebrated with exuberance.
“They never gave up in this game,” Crowley said. “Come playoff time the seniors always step up. They’re on short time. They always care and they always want to win a State championship.”
Coach Crowley praised Mason Leet for his leadership. He also cited Nathan Schuler and Musa Husseini for their contributions.
“Nathan we moved down low,” Crowley said. “He’s typically a long stick midfielder. We moved him to end close defense knowing that [Tahoma] had three really good attackmen and we wanted to match up with our best three best defenders. I thought he played absolutely amazing. And Musa is one of the best defensemen in the state. Doesn’t get recognized as much as he should. And I think he was lights out today.”
Crowley was asked to define the current state of Woodinville Lacrosse.
“Culture. We’re still somewhat young in the high school [ranks] and we’re still building that culture. We have some catching up to do with more established programs. I have no doubt we will get there… We just have to take that next step forward.”
COACH MAKENNA GETTING TALLER
A year ago, Woodinville lost in the State semifinals to Eastlake. As Coach Pete Crowley spoke to a reporter, he held his young daughter Makenna in his arms. Either from fatigue or shyness, she buried her head in his chest.
A year later, little Makenna is appreciably taller.
“She’s the light of my life, she gets me through these hard times,” Crowley said. “You’ve got me choking up now, thanks. But yeah, she’s out there supporting the guys. The boys call her Coach Makenna, and they love her. The community has embraced our family and I think the world of Woodinville for that. I’m going to keep giving it everything I have and so will our coaching staff.”