Sports

Lakewood kickers come back, then fall in shootout

Lakewood sophomore Brandon Ochoa tussles with Archbishop Murphy mid Erik Schmidt.   - Danielle Szulczewski
Lakewood sophomore Brandon Ochoa tussles with Archbishop Murphy mid Erik Schmidt.
— image credit: Danielle Szulczewski

LAKEWOOD — Yo-yos, roller coasters and pendulums must be imperfect metaphors for the Lakewood soccer team’s emotionally tumultuous game against Archbishop Murphy.

Coming back from a 2-0 halftime deficit April 2, the boys tied up the game in the final minutes, forcing an extension in the contest between the two undefeated Cascade Conference teams.

In a shootout, Lakewood’s third in the six-games-young season, the Wildcats won on the fourth penalty kick. Lakewood missed their second kick and Archbishop Murphy keeper Doug Ehlebracht blocked their third, rendering the Wildcats’ successful fourth kick all they needed for the win.

It was a disappointing end for a Lakewood team that endured a trying game and felt they had the talent to win.

“We had two goals called back,” said Lakewood coach Vaughn Vandelac. “Those two goals there would have changed the game.”

Both near-goals came in the first 30 minutes. Not longer after an apparent goal by junior midfielder Joseph Hawkins in the 29th minute, Archbishop Murphy put the first goal on the board, scoring their second in the 37th.

Lakewood had several opportunities to score, but they didn’t close in on the Wildcats until the second half. Evander Ochoa finally put Lakewood on the scoreboard for good, scoring on a penalty kick around the 50-minute mark. The tying goal came from senior Grant Bacus with just under five minutes remaining in regulation.

Overtime provided little noteworthy action, forcing the shootout. Lakewood came in with a 2-0 record in shootouts and evened Murphy’s first PK with a matching effort from Brandon Ochoa. But Lakewood’s second attempt went over the crossbar and a third was blocked, nullifying a fourth Lakewood attempt.

“I think we could have beat them. I know we’re better,” Vandelac said. “I’m sure we’ll take it out on the next team.”

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