Don’t count these Falcons out anymore.
After coming back from a three goal deficit against the Ketchikan Kings on Saturday night, the Thunder Mountain girls soccer team showed more heart in just their third season of organized pitch play than can be found on the rosters of Manchester United or Man. City, well, if one could measure heart.
“It was a great feeling,” TMHS coach Kris Coffee said of the team’s second tie. “Our girls showed such determination and played hard. They did not give up.”
After the Ketchikan Kings (4-3-3) had jumped out to a three goal lead in the first half it appeared that the Falcons would be leaving their weatherworn field empty handed.
Kayhi’s Ellie Potter and Gracie Heitman scored in the fifth and 37th minutes, respectively, to open a 2-0 halftime advantage. Then the Lady Kings Britta Pihl scored on a breakaway in the 45th minute and a long second half seemed to be in the making for the Falcons. However, news of the Falcons demise was greatly exaggerated.
Thunder Mountain scored three goals within 10 minutes to pull even with Kayhi.
Rhys coffee pushed the ball past the side of a defender, touched the ball again, and fired in a shot in the 59th minute. Coffee than had a direct kick off a personal foul in the 64th minute. The shot powered over the goalies head from 25 yards out to bring the score to 3-2.
Junior Carmen Smith slid into the third goal shot. The powerful kick rebounded back out and she fired in the tying goal at the 69th minute.
After Kayhi seemingly took the game with a score in the 76th minute on a Potter corner kick that deflected off the Falcons and into the netting, Thunder Mountain went on another blast fest down the pitch.
“I call it the pachinko palace,” TMHS coach Kris Coffee said. “That old game where the ball bounces around.”
With time running down Darbee Hickock headed a shot towards the Kings keeper that rebounded out off the goal post. The shot caromed out to senior Hannah Everett who kicked on goal. That shot was stopped back out and then Smith fired in the rebound for her second score of the night.
“It was great to be able to come back for three down at the half,” Coffee said. “For our girls to not give up is very big. And they felt so great after the game. We were so close to that first win. It was an exciting game.”
The whistle blew on the ensuing kickoff, ending the game in a tie. It is the second-straight tie between Kayhi and Thunder Mountain.
The Falcons play in a cancer awareness game against JDHS tonight at 7 p.m. (boys play at 5:15).
“We are looking forward to that,” Coffee said. “Wanting to do something as a soccer community for cancer support.”
On Saturday the Falcons will play Sitka at TMHS. The game begins with senior recognition prior to the 1 p.m. match start. Falcons’ seniors are Cathy Mattson, Melissa Guillen, Hannah Everett and Anna Moreno-Rodriguez.