ABERDEEN, WA—Snohomish County Football Club got 2 goals in each half on Saturday April 3 to come away with a 4-1 Western Washington Premier League win over the Grays Harbor Gulls at Stewart Field.
There were heroes on both sides and even one in the press box. Grays Harbor goalkeeper Alexis Garcia spent the afternoon making save after save, some of them spectacular. For his part, Steelheads goalkeeper Alexis ‘Regis’ Viteri was also turning away the Gulls. But none of that would have even been possible if Ben Barene, Gulls co-founder and the day’s public address announcer, hadn’t volunteered to act as the sole referee in the match after the crew on the way to officiate had car trouble in Olympia. A certified state referee, Barene got the approval of both teams and the league so the match could be played.
Kick off came late but at least it came, and both sides played tentatively, searching for a flow. In the 25th minute the Steelheads got a penalty kick call when Randy Galvan was taken down in the box. Rio Alcorta converted to make it 1-0 to the Fish. 10 minutes later Andrew Escalante ran down the right sideline and crossed to Parker Van Driel who finished from close range to make it 2-0 SnoCo. Parker had a great debut match for the Fish, causing problems on the left wing with his speed and timing.
It was 2-0 at the half but the Steelheads got a crucial early goal just after the break. Garcia saved a shot off the line but the rebound fell to Escalante. He lofted something between a shot and cross back at goal. Garcia pushed it away but right to the head of Rajal Gounder who made no mistake while notching his first goal with the club. It was 3-0 in the 47th minute.
The Gulls got one back in the 65th when Irvin Vicente scored on an assist from Aaron Arias. Grays Harbor continued to push for control and a way back into the match, but it was over when a short corner kick between Randy Galvan and Carlos Rodriguez ended back at the foot of Galvan who lofted one over Garcia in the 85th minute. Replays suggested the goal should have been called offside, but it stood up officially in the 4-1 final.
The Steelheads are now 1-0-0 in league play (2-0-0 overall) with a week off before hosting Kirkland FC in a league counter on Sunday April 18 at 3 PM at Lakewood High School in Smokey Point.