Newport dismisses Scots in shootout

  • Charlie Laughtland<br>Enterprise writer
  • Thursday, February 28, 2008 10:00am

In a matchup of two teams with a combined 17 shutouts to their credit, goals were expectedly scarce.

Kingco 3A champion Newport needed a penalty kick shootout to fend off Shorecrest Tuesday night at Newport High School in the opening round of the Class 3A boys soccer state playoffs.

Newport edged the Scots 5-4 in the shootout to eke out a 2-1 victory and a spot in the quarterfinals. Shorecrest ended its season 12-6-3.

After the Scots missed their final attempt, Newport senior Khoi Nguyen drilled the winning penalty kick past the outstretched arms of Shorecrest keeper Rylan Hawkins.

“Normally, four (penalty kicks) is enough,” Scots coach Teddy Mitalas said. “They had some good penalty kickers.”

The Knights took a 1-0 lead in the 25th minute on Kyle Tatro’s goal. In the 65th minute the Newport goalie had trouble handling Taylor Starkey’s free kick and Willi Nordby punched in the loose ball to even the score.

“They took it to us the first 15, 20 minutes,” Mitalas said. “The whole second half was ours.”

After halftime, the Scots added a third forward to the fray to keep the pressure on Newport (17-0-1).

“We had a lot of shots,” Mitalas said. “We could have gone ahead. It was unfortunate we couldn’t finish off the opportunities we had.”

To clinch their first trip to state in two years, the Scots stunned Northwest 3A League champion Squalicum — a state runner-up in 2002 — 1-0 May 17 at Civic Field in Bellingham.

Starkey beat a pair of defenders to net the game’s only goal in the 63rd minute.

“The goalie thought he’d go far post and he went near post,” Mitalas said.

Two nights earlier, Squalicum defeated Shore-crest by the same score to earn a shot at the district title.

“We wore them down,” Mitalas said. “They didn’t sub much and we subbed a lot.”

Reaching state with a fairly inexperienced lineup — 17 seniors graduated off last year’s team and 15 players will return next season — was a surprise for Mitalas, who is stuck on 199 career wins at Shorecrest.

“These kids have shocked me the whole year,” he said. “I didn’t expect to be there.”

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