The margin for victory between Arlington and Marysville-Pilchuck on April 23 turned out to be one goal.
The Eagles defeated the Tomahawks 1-0 at Arlington High School.
“It was basically a classic Wesco matchup,” said Kieren Raney, head coach for Arlington High School’s soccer team.
He complimented Marysville-Pilchuck’s soccer program.
“Marysville-Pilchuck over the last couple of years has been a very successful program,” Raney said, noting the Tomahawks won a conference championship and competed at state in recent years. “We knew this was going to be a tough game.”
He noted that over the past 10 years, Arlington has had seven losses, two ties and one win, not including Friday’s win, against Marysville-Pilchuck.
“I thought it was two evenly matched teams. They took advantage of their opportunities and we didn’t,” Marysville-Pilchuck head coach Paul Bartley said.
Arlington junior Emmanuel Escalante scored the lone goal of the game with around 5:50 to go during the first period. “He’s been absolutely massive for us,” Raney said.
He added that he was concerned about the second half and encouraged the team to stay calm and relaxed.
“We grew and learned a lot from that game,” Raney said.
Both teams had chances to score in the second half. “It could have gone either way,” Raney said. “It felt like a teeter totter.”
He highlighted Escalante, who is the Eagles central midfielder.
“He absolutely took control of the game,” Raney said. “It was his most solid match I’ve seen him play.”
Raney also noted the efforts of goalkeeper Giovanni Acero who made a key save late in the game.
“That can be one of the most difficult things you can do,” Raney said.
Bartley noted the efforts of Ashton Wolff, who had several headers on goal and set up opportunities for other teammates.
He added the efforts of Luis Galvan and Miguel Amaya-Guvman on defense. “The only shot (Arlington) scored came outside the 18,” Bartley said.
The April 23 victory puts the Arlington Eagles at 5-1. “We’re having a lights-out season,” Raney said noting victories against such strong Wesco teams as Marysville-Pilchuck and Jackson.
“We’re finally starting to out and earn respect from teams that would smack us,” Raney said. During his first season as head coach two years ago, the Eagles were 4-9-1 and, because of COVID-19, the 2020 season was canceled one day before Arlington’s first game.
The Eagles also have a small squad for the pandemic-shortened spring sports season that wraps up next week.
A typical season sees the Eagles fielding a varsity and junior varsity squad of 18 students each. This year varsity has 14 students, and the junior varsity has 16 students.
The Eagles host Glacier Peak April 30 and Lake Stevens May 3 and concludes the season at Snohomish May 5.
“We’re just looking forward to the next game,” Raney said.
Marysville-Pilchuck plays Marysville Getchell April 30, travels to Archbishop Murphy May 3 and concludes the season hosting Glacier Peak.
“The kids are appreciative to have an opportunity to play,” Bartley said.