Blaine and Lynden Christian battled to a 1-1 tie in a Northwest Conference boys’ soccer match-up on Thursday, April 23, at Bender Fields in Lynden.
Each team dominated play for a half — Blaine in the first and LC in the second. Zack Oakley notched an unassisted goal for the Borderites in the 10th minute, and Carson Janzen scored off an assist form Liam Kroontje for the Lyncs in the 72nd minute.
The Lyncs had a flurry of opportunities in the second half, hitting the crossbar and having the shots deflected by either Blaine goalkeeper Tristan Soto or the goalpost on multiple occasions.
“We didn’t come out well, and you can’t play a flat half,” Lynden Christian coach Brent De Ruyter said in a phone interview. “In this conference you can’t do that. Once we got going we turned up the pressure in the second half. We had quite a few chances the last 10-15 minutes — a few corners, some set pieces, and the goal — but at that point it was just too late.”
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Janzen’s play up top highlighted the Lyncs’ strong second-half effort, as he created opportunities and was active in looking for rebounds off of missed or deflected shots. For Blaine, Konner VanRijswick was a thorn in the side of the Lyncs attack, deflecting three or four shots on his own, De Ruyter said.
Lynden Christian hosts Nooksack Valley at 4:30 p.m. Saturday, April 25, at home. Blaine hosts Anacortes at 4:30 p.m. Tuesday, April 28, at home.
Blaine 1, Lynden Christian 1
Goal: Zack Oakley (B), time 10; Goal: Carson Janzen (LC), assist: Liam Kroontje, time 72. Goalies (saves) — Blaine: Tristan Soto (5); Lynden Christian: Jake Poag (1). Shots on goal — Lynden Christian 8, Blaine 2.