The Islanders (2-4-0) were unable to slow down the high-powered Lake Washington (3-1-1) offense in a 6-0 road defeat on Sept. 26.
Lake Washington opened up the scoring when Jen Estes headed the ball past Islanders goalkeeper Amy Braman four minutes in. Estes would beat Braman again five minutes later, this time from distance to double their advantage. Lake Washington struck again when Anna Schwisow scored in the 13th minute to put them up 3-0.
With the Islanders falling behind 3-0 so early in the match, head coach James Valles said he started to rotate players to get them experience on the pitch.
“Once it was 3-0, I could loosen up who I was going to play and take the opportunity to get in as many players into the game as possible,” Valles said. “Just getting them that valuable experience that they need.”
After conceding the third goal, the Islanders started to make adjustments in their midfield to try and slow down Lake Washington.
“Space won’t beat you, players will,” Valles said. “(Lake Washington’s) players were moving through the spaces that we were marking but nobody was picking them up.”
Lake Washington extended its lead five minutes into the second half with a goal from Ellie Pederson. Lake Washington added two more goals late in the half to get a 6-0 win. Valles said the Lake Washington midfield linked up very well.
“Once we had our assignments, it was better,” Valles said. “But they’re a good team and they just overwhelmed us.”
The loss was the third straight for the Islanders, but Valles said the team isn’t hanging its head.
“What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger,” Valles said. “(The players) are not busted up about it. We can look at the season and see that there are teams that are just better than us, but we can learn and get better from each game and become a little bit more of a team.”
Valles said he hopes that the wins will come as they continue to learn to play as a team.
“You have to take what this season has given you and try to build on it,” Valles said. “I’m trying to build them up. Hopefully the scores don’t crush them, the scores are already hard to deal with. I try to keep it positive.”
The Islanders face another tough test at home against the Liberty Patriots (2-2-2) at 7:30 p.m. on Oct. 3. Moving forward, Valles said the team is going to remain upbeat and focus on small victories.