Sports

Even wind can't help Eagles against Bainbridge

"Alex von Ries Crooks admits he's terrified of the wind at Silverdale Stadium. In fact, he gets downright defensive about it.It's actually easier for us to attack upwind there, said von Ries Crooks, coach of the Bainbridge High School boys soccer team that beat Klahowya 2-0 Saturday on the Silverdale carpet.The Spartans started off with the gusty south wind at their backs against Klahowya, but were without a goal in the first half. Normally, it's a bad thing for a team to lose its tailwind advantage without putting some goals on the board.But Bainbridge shone with the wind in its face, getting second-half goals from Matt Dick and Ashton Rezayat for the victory.The Spartans took the exact opposite tack from many Silverdale Stadium visitors, according to von Ries Crooks. Most teams play defensively when they have to go against both their opponent and the often stiff winds which rake over the already-quick artificial surface.We stayed with a more defensive lineup in the first half, and then switched with the wind, said von Ries Crooks, whose team is more accustomed to the slower natural-grass surface at their home venue and prepped for the artificial floor by working out the day before on the school's running track. We just seem more comfortable attacking into the wind.By contrast, the Eagles probably felt pretty good about shutting the wind-aided visitors out through the first 40 minutes - only to be deflated by Dick's goal in the seventh minute after the intermission.We played a pretty good game, but we still haven't been creative enough inside 30 yards, said Klahowya coach Troy Oelschlager, whose team looked frustrated on offense no matter which way the wind was blowing. We've had a couple games where we've done all right. We had three goals against Port Townsend, five against Sequim ... but that's just about it.Right now it's more of a mental thing for us, Oelschlager said of the Eagles' lack of scoring punch. We've got to break out of it. That's going to be a tough way to win when we get to the (Class 2A) playoffs.Bainbridge looked ready to use the win to its full advantage Saturday, Mitka von Ries Crooks bonking the Spartans' first shot off the crossbar less than two minutes in and forcing Klahowya goalkeeper Brandon Hintz to make his first save a minute later.But the Spartans didn't really dominate the way a team with the wind at its back has been known to do at Silverdale. Klahowya had as many good scoring chances as the islanders did, one a free kick by Brett Krache and two more - shots by Brandon Milovich and Roberto Preti - set up by Krache's long throw-ins.It was another throw-in that kick-started the Spartans early in the second half, as Jed Ballou nudged a throw in midfield across to Dick for a 15-yard shot that beat Hintz to the near post.Rezayat scored 13 minutes from the end on a rebound, after Hintz made a spectacular save of Anders von Ries Crooks' free kick.Klahowya - even with the southerly breezes as its 12th man - was quiet offensively in the second half, outshot 7-5 (15-9 for the game)."

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