Sports

GIRLS SOCCER | Bellarmine Prep thwarts Wolves’ league-title aspirations

TACOMA — South Kitsap’s playoff schedule became much tougher.

The Wolves harbored aspirations of a Class 4A Narrows League girls soccer championship, but those were derailed when junior midfielder Kaylee Kebba scored seconds before halftime during Tuesday night’s 1-0 loss at Bellarmine Prep.

“It slipped in and that was the game,” South coach Julie Cain said.

The setback means South (7-3-3 overall, 5-3-2 league) no longer can win the league championship. That is significant because the first-place finisher in 4A Narrows earns an automatic state-playoff berth. Teams that finish second through fourth in the league must win two games in the 4A West Central District, which starts Nov. 7, to advance to state. During previous years, only one win at districts was required for a state berth.

“We knew coming in it was a big game,” said Cain, whose team closes out the regular season Thursday against Gig Harbor and Monday versus Yelm.

If the Wolves win their first match at districts, they will advance to play Nov. 9 in a winner-to-state, loser-out match. Both matches at districts will be against teams from the South Puget Sound League.

South might have been able to avoid that scenario by converting some of the shots it had on goal early in the first half.

“We had five or six chances that could’ve gone in,” Cain said. “I thought in those first 20 minutes, because they didn’t fall when we had our chances, it changed the momentum of the game.”

It was a much different result than the Wolves’ 3-0 win Oct. 3 against the Lions. Given that outcome, it might have seemed reasonable to expect South to defeat Bellarmine (7-2-4, 5-1-4) twice in a season for the first time since 2009.

“We’re the only [league] loss they’ve had this season, though,” Cain said. “They came out hard and it was a physical game.

“Joey comes up with league championships year after year. He’s a good coach.”

At Bellarmine Prep 1, South Kitsap 0

First half-1, Bellarmine Prep, Kaylee Kebba, 39th minute.

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