Spokane opens title defense with big road win over Wenatchee FC
SPOKANE SHADOW NEWS RELEASE -- Sunday, May 3, 2015
After a back-and-forth first half in which the Shadow went to the break up 3-2, the defending Evergreen Premier League champions dominated the second half in Wenatchee Sunday evening, getting five unanswered goals to post an 8-2 victory over the Capitals at Wenatchee Valley College.
The hosts jumped to an early lead just two minutes into the contest when Adrian Espinoza opened the scoring from the top of the penalty area.
The Shadow only needed eight minutes, though, to pull even on a great individual effort from Adam Talley (North Idaho College / East Valley HS). The striker took the ball around the right side of the back line and cut into the six, sending a shot near post that rebounded off the keeper, allowing him to knock in the equalizer. In the 20th minute, defender Brady Ulen (North Idaho College / Post Falls HS) nodded in a Jesse Retan (Whitworth / Cheney HS) corner to put the Shadow in front.
“Just right place, right time. Chad is letting us center backs go up for corner kicks and free kicks, so just taking advantage of that,” Ulen said of his goal and head coach Chad Brown. “The kids are all athletic on our team so we match up with pretty much any other team and we are gonna beat them out athletically. So, just taking advantage of that and think it helps us a lot.”
Wenatchee, however, evened matters in the 26th with a similar play with Josh Alvarez scoring off of corner from Espinoza.
In the 37th minute Sam Engle (Whitworth) cut diagonally into the area and unleashed an unchallenged shot that restored the Spokane lead, which they held to the break despite several chances for Wenatchee at the other end.
The second half was all Spokane.
Two minutes into the period a turnover at midfielder allowed the Shadow to quickly get the ball to Engle near the box, where he calmly slotted the ball inside the left post. Three minutes later Engle sparked a great play that led to a Wenatchee own goal when he back-heeled the ball at midfield to Graison Le (Gonzaga University / Coeur d’Alene HS). Le’s run up the right concluded with a shot to the far post that was knocked in by a Capital defender attempting to beat Talley to the tap-in.
“Once we compacted our offense and defense together, and started communicating more as a team I think we just took off from there and shut them down in the second half,” Ulen commented about the change between the two periods.
In the 57th, a hard shot stopped by the keeper rebounded well out on the left end line where Trevan Estrellado (Cheney HS) collected the ball and proceeded to beat a defender before slipping it inside the six, where Nick Ulowetcz (Gonzaga University) knocked it home.
Talley pushed the lead to five goals in the 61st when he converted a penalty down the middle after being brought down in the area, and then another Wenatchee own goal in the 77th rounded out the scoring for the game.
“I thought we started off a little slow and then in the second half we definitely picked it up, and looked like the championship team that we were last year,” said Adam Talley after the game.
Coming Up - FIRST Home Game – Saturday, May 9 vs Seattle Stars
The Shadow will open their home slate against the Stars next week against Seattle Stars. Kickoff is set for 7:00 pm at Spokane Falls CC Stadium with family-friendly tailgating beginning at 5:00 pm.
Spokane Shadow 8 :: 2 Wenatchee FC
WEN: Adrian Espinoza 2
SPO: Adam Talley 10
SPO: Brady Ulen (Jesse Retan) 20
WEN: Josh Alvarez (Adrian Espinoza) 26
SPO: Sam Engle (Colin Shockman) 37
SPO: Sam Engle (Zach Hamer) 47
SPO: Wenatchee own goal 50
SPO: Nick Ulowetz (Trevan Estrellado) 57
SPO: Adam Talley (penalty) 61
SPO: Wenatchee own goal 77