A soccer legacy

Papermaker boys host the defending state champions Wednesday

Soccer continues to set the bar higher for Camas High School athletics.

When Roland Minder took over the Papermaker boys soccer program in 1995, there were a few trophies scattered in the cases at the high school.

Today, those cases are filled with soccer, football, baseball, basketball, wrestling, softball, cross country, track, tennis, golf, gymnastics and swimming hardware. The overflow started with soccer.

Back in 2005, the Camas High School girls and boys soccer teams captured a state championship in the same school year. The boys were in the finals again next season, and won it all again in 2008 and 2011. From 1999 on, they never missed a state tournament.

Fast forward to 2016, and it’s still happening. The Papermaker boys shredded Woodinville 3-0, on the hallowed grounds of Doc Harris Stadium Saturday, to get back to the Sweet 16 for the 18th time.

“These kids were not even born when this streak started,” Minder said. “Eighteen years in a row … that’s a good thing.”

After Camas survived Heritage and Union to become district champions earlier in the week, Minder said the whole demeanor of the team changed before Saturday’s contest.

“The tone in the locker room was totally different than any game this year,” he said. “I could tell they were ready to play.”

The Papermakers attacked from the get-go. They earned a penalty kick 10 minutes into the match, and Danny Wing converted it.

“I saw the keeper leaning to his left,” Wing said. “I kept my head up, saw him dive and hit it the other way.”

The second half started with a bang for the Papermakers. Bennett Lehner served the ball up from the corner and Dominic Fewel bashed it into the net with his head.

“Bennett played a good ball and I happened to make the right run,” Fewel said. “I just hit it, and the next thing I knew, it was in the goal. It was a dream start to the second half.”

Lehner got burned by the Woodinville keeper making a diving save. The next time around, Lehner finished the deal by hitting the ball the other way for his 22nd goal of the season. He also has 11 assists.

Camas (17-1-1) hosts the first round of the state tournament. Nothing different than the last 17 years here.

“It’s a legacy we hope to hold on to for as long as possible,” Fewel said.

“It shows how good of a coach Minder is,” Wing said. “He trains us hard every day so we can do this.”

The Papermakers will face defending state champion Snohomish (14-1-1) Wednesday. Kickoff is at 5 p.m., at Doc Harris Stadium.