The U16 boys made their second trek to Seattle to participate in the second round of Far West Regional League play January 3-5 at the Starfire Soccer Complex. The three game series was part of the Pacific Northwest Winter Classic Showcase, which concludes in Boise in early March.
Entering the weekend with a 1-1 record, the U16’s opened up play against the PacWest Maroon 97’s, beating the division leaders in a wet 2-0 match. Kamden Hundersmarck recorded the shutout in goal with six saves, while goals were scored by Muganza Katanga and Sam Rucklos.
The 16’s came back on Saturday and blanked another tough opponent beating the Washington Premier 97’s 3-0. Again, Hundersmarck recorded the shutout with three save and five corner kick defenses, with goals scored by Andrew Freemuth, Katanga and Rucklos.
With a chance to put control of the league title in their own hands, the team faced off against the Snohomish 97’s with the winner potentially qualifying for an automatic bid to the Far West Regional Championships later this year. The teams battled to a 1-1 draw in the first half, with the 16’s only goal coming from a Katanga shot from just inside the 18-yard mark. But Snohomish went on to score the only second half goal and take a 2-1 victory from the 16’s.
With two games left in league play, Rush players Rucklos and Katanga lead the league in scoring with 5 and 4 goals each. The team, now 3-2 in league, next faces off against the Westside and Eastside Timber 97’s March 8-9 at Optimist Field, where the potential for a 2nd place finish is up for grabs.