By beating Battle Ground and tying with Skyview, the Camas High School boys soccer team secured the No. 1 seed heading into the bi-district tournament.
The 11-1-3 Papermakers host 8-3-5 South Kitsap in the first round Thursday, at 6 p.m., at Doc Harris Stadium. Camas is trying to get to the state tournament for the 19th year in a row.
“It’s just going to take effort. We just have to want it more than the other team,” said senior forward and captain Danny Wing. “When everybody wants it, when everybody plays hard, we can do anything. We can go far in state. We just have to want it.”
Camas gave plenty of effort against Battle Ground May 1, and it paid off with a 5-1 victory.
Five different Papermakers scored goals in the game. Josh Schneider netted the first one in the 15th minute on an assist from Wing.
“Danny created the opportunity. I was just there to finish it,” Schneider said. “It shows that we’re not just a one-man team. Everybody on this team trusts each other.”
The second goal featured even more teamwork. Dominic Fewel fielded a free kick from Max Bisborough and headed it across the 18-yard goal box. Erik Brainard kicked the ball into the net, and the Papermakers were up 2-0.
“Dom headed it across, and it was just scrambling at that point,” Brainard said. “I just wanted to get it in the back of the net. I’m glad it went in.”
Fewel and Josh Tkachenko chipped in goals to give Camas a 4-0 lead at halftime. Tybalt Thornberry fired a shot from 35 yards out that slipped through the keeper’s fingertips and landed in the net to put the Papermakers up 5-0. Battle Ground got one goal back, but that was it.
Camas couldn’t keep the momentum going offensively, and settled for a 0-0 tie against Skyview May 3.
Goalkeeper Spencer Vela made three diving saves to help preserve the shut out for the Papermakers.
“I knew Skyview was going to come at us. We’ve always had a big rivalry with them, and I knew that I had to give it my all,” Vela said. “The last time we played them, I wasn’t there mentally. I knew I needed to step it up for this game. It felt good to be able to do that and get the shut out.”
Although the Papermakers were unable to avenge their loss to Skyview earlier in the season, a tie still gave them the No. 1 seed and a share of the league championship with Battle Ground.
Now, it’s all about giving as much effort as humanly possible.
“The best way to be remembered is by going as far as we can and hopefully winning state,” Wing said. “It has to be better than what we played today, if we want to do it, but we know we can do it. We have great coaches and great talent on the team. It all comes down to the effort.”