SK knows it has to pick up the pace

The South Kitsap High School girls soccer team will head into its rivalry match undefeated.

Eight different Wolves scored in South’s 8-0 win Thursday in Narrows League play against Foss at Joe Knowles Field.

South coach Scott Sodorff still has concerns about his team, though, as the Wolves (4-0-1 overall, 2-0-0 league) head into Tuesday’s match at Gig Harbor.

“We have to speed up our game,” he said. “If we come out that slow against Gig Harbor, Bellarmine Prep or Central Kitsap, they’re going to exploit that.”

Foss (1-4-1, 0-3-0), which hasn’t scored a goal in a league match this season, wasn’t able to.

Kylie Balstad scored South’s first goal in the 12th minute, but the Falcons held the Wolves to one goal for most of the first half until Ashley Polen scored in the 31st.

South then added three more goals in the next six minutes by Tori Fairweather (33rd), Christina Boddie (34th) and Kristin Hunter (37th).

“It seems like we’re having trouble getting up to game speed in the beginning,” said Sodorff, adding that Polen’s goal helped the Wolves build momentum.

Courtney Mayo (45th), Becca Christenberry (48th) and Courtney Brown (54th) added goals in the second half, while goalkeeper Monique Morey earned her second shutout of the week.

South defeated Wilson, 2-0, on Tuesday. Brown (11th) and Mayo (22nd) scored goals in that match.

“It’s a good experience,” South defender Kaileigh Westermann said. “It’s good to focus on one goal when you don’t have much else to worry about.”

Westermann said that includes “passing and communication — things we don’t get to examine in more intense games.”

There also are some negatives involved with the early schedule, though. Westermann said, “If we didn’t do something well in this game,” Gig Harbor and Olympia — the Wolves’ opponent Thursday — could exploit those issues.

“We need to distribute through the middle and work on our outside runs,” Westermann said.

The Wolves were in a similar position a year ago when they opened with victories against Wilson and Foss. They followed that with a 1-0 win against Gig Harbor, but lost 4-1 at Olympia.

Sodorff said the Wolves’ early-match struggles are similar to last season and next week should give the team a good indication where it stands.

“We kind of had two games here where we weren’t challenged as much,” he said. “We’re looking forward to next week and getting into league play.”

Westermann said the defense also will have to be prepared for the turf at Gig Harbor.

“We’re going to play on their turf, so it’s going to be faster,” she said.

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