First Quarter: Bainbridge, coming off a major victory over their rivals last week, set the tone for this game by taking care of the ball and pressing hard on offense. The Braves struggled to win face-offs as the Spartans kept the ball on their offensive side of the field for nearly the entire quarter. Bainbridge senior midfielder Randy Shrout started with a goal from the dirt 4 minutes into the game. This sparked their offensive momentum as they fired shot after shot trying to break through a defense that only allowed 3 goals last week against visiting California team, Stevenson.
Braves’ senior goalie Jabrey Hupf-Doyle was keeping his defense together by calling out hot players and making key saves. They suffered two more goals from senior midfielder Nat Constan and sophomore attackman Merritt McMahon as they struggled to successfully clear the ball in this quarter. Considering the amount of time the Spartans maintained possession, the score should have been much higher, giving credit to Blanchet’s defense.
Second Quarter: Bainbridge continued their groove with a goal from Shrout and junior midfielder Carson Byran into the second quarter. As it was beginning to look grim for the Braves, they lose one of their top scorer’s attackman Forrest Snorsky to a slashing penalty. Down a man they call a timeout to find a way to get themselves into this game. Immediately after the timeout, senior midfielder Jack Manca makes a surprising strike to put his team on the board making it a 5-1 game.
Shrout was having an MVP night completing a hat-trick with 5 minutes left in the first half. The Spartans were tearing down this tired defense with 6 goals in the second quarter to finish the half 9-2. Blanchet made defensive adjustments late in the half that would pay off late in the game.
Third Quarter: The Spartans finally reached double-digits after senior attackman Max Oden scored a quick stick shot off a feed from swing JV freshman Charlie Hughes. Even more interesting, this would be the last goal Bainbridge would make for the rest of the game.
Blanchet struggled to clear the ball the entire first half so they switched to a Gilman Clear as Hupf-Doyle made amazing deep transitions to his midfielders. This greatly helped their defense as they also switched to more man coverage than zone. Bainbridge, losing possession time, became aggressive with their stick checks disrupting the Braves’ offense and making it difficult for them to set up a play. The quarter ended with an obvious momentum shift to Blanchet.
Fourth Quarter: Blanchet was a different team in the final quarter winning the majority of the face-offs and effectively shutting out their opponent’s offense. Immediately, senior attackman Scott Doquilo wins the first face-off and feeds a pass to sophomore midfielder Nick Barrett for a goal. Encouraged, Doquilo wins the next face-off and feeds a pass to Manca for his second goal of the game. All of a sudden this game flipped and Blanchet became the better team.
The Braves were playing as if this game had just started and were clearly determined to go down swinging. It was seriously beginning to look like we were going to see a comeback with 10 minutes left in the game and a four-point deficit. Bainbridge was great at clearing the ball and forcing Blanchet to reset their plays costing them precious minutes. Braves’ junior attackman Finn Jelinek did not want to quit as he scored two goals in the last three minutes of the game.
Bainbridge moves onto a 1-0 conference record as they will host the O’Dea fighting Irish this Friday. They will need to sharpen their late number stats if they’re going to beat a very tough Eastside Catholic team next Tuesday. Blanchet moves onto 1-1 overall on their way to their first road game at Seattle Prep this Friday. If Blanchet can play the way they did in the fourth quarter, they could enjoy an impressive season this year.
Story by Michael Thornbloom