High School Sports

BOYS' SOCCER: Lions have trouble finding back of net

Missed scoring opportunities came back to bite the Lynden boys’ soccer team in the first round of the Class 2A Northwest District Tournament on Saturday.

Though the Lions outshot Lakewood by 5-1, they ended up dropping a heartbreaker in a shootout, 2-1.

“I thought we were the better team,” Lynden coach Drew Smiley said. “That makes it tough to swallow.”

Lynden converted its first four attempts in the shootout by Jesse Gonzales, Andrew Blair, Miguel Rios and Spencer Watt, but Donnely Cardenas’ attempt was turned away.

Lakewood converted on all five of its attempts to claim the win and move on Thursday’s semifinal showdown with Sultan. Lynden (10-8) drops into the consolation bracket and faces a 7:30 p.m. elimination game against Bellingham Thursday at Mount Vernon.

Lakewood scored its goal in regulation in only the second minute, when Evander Ochoa put in a loose ball while Lynden was trying to save the ball from going out on the end line.

“That was kind of a wake-up call,” Smiley said.

The Lions offense responded, generating a total of 20 shots in the game.

But it wasn’t until Sebastian Kent found Matt Hicks with an open net in front of him with five minutes to play that Lynden was able to get on the scoreboard.

“We had so many shots that hit the posts, or banged off the crossbar or just missed,” Smiley said. “I really thought we played the better game. We just weren’t able to get it done today.”