Two second-half goals within minutes of each other pushed the Lady Borderites ahead of the Squalicum Storm in girls’ soccer action on the muddy fields of the Northwest Soccer Park in Bellingham on Tuesday. The win improves Blaine’s record to 3-5.
The Storm struck first with a goal early in the first half after constant pressure against the Borderite defense. Blaine found its answering goal off the foot of senior forward Samantha Nault with an assist by sophomore midfielder Emily Grayston in the 27th minute. Nault ran flat out past a Squalicum defender and fired the shot past the Storm’s goalkeeper.
The game was tied 1-1 going into the second half, setting the stage for a hard-fought Borderite comeback.
Blaine head coach Dan Steelquist said the Storm was not the only thing his team was fighting off that day. He said the Borderites played through a combination of colds and nagging injuries by supporting each other as a team, just like they do every practice.
“Half the team [was] battling something,” Steelquist remarked.
The second half started with a score by sophomore midfielder Hope Wilkett off an assist by freshman midfielder Olivia Olason. Wilkett stepped over a fallen Storm goalkeeper to boot the shot into a completely open goal.
Wilkett ended up assisting on the next goal minutes later by forward Katey Conway. Conway’s goal bumped the score to 3-1, a lead they wouldn’t give up.
The Storm was able keep the pressure on in Blaine’s side of the field, efforts that eventually lead to a late-game goal that made it a 3-2 game. However, Borderite sophomore goalkeeper Anna Hewitt was able to keep the rest of Squalicum’s shots from finding a home, clinching the win for Blaine.
The Borderites next travel to Sedro-Woolley to take on the Cubs on Thursday, October 14. Steelquist said the Cubs’ 1-6 record does not necessarily mean Blaine will not be in for a challenging match, though his team will go in expecting a win. Thursday’s game will take place at Sedro-Woolley High School at 7 p.m.