Bellevue Upends Overlake, 16-6, A New Rivalry is Bourne
And so it begins. Overlake's move to Division I after winning the 2009 Division II championship brings with it a whole new slate of opponents. The Owls have never faced most of their conference foes previously and are starting most games with a blank slate. This was not the case with tonight's game at Bellevue.
In what is destined to become a heated Northeast Conference rivalry, Overlake took on Bellevue at the beautiful new turf field at Wilburton Park. Players snarled early like thoroughbreds in their gates, and the air was thick with competitive juices. Oh wait, nevermind, that was just the rain.
These teams know each other well. Overlake draws students who live in Bellevue to the allure of a well-respected private school with a great academic reputation. Bellevue occasionally steals players back offering big school amenities and 3A athletics. These players measure each other all year around and when today's whistle blew, emotions were high.
Machinations between the programs caused today's contest to be rescheduled and it proved to be to Overlake's detriment. Missing due to a school trip was the core of the Owl's defense, and Cole Nordstrom wasted no time celebrating their absence with some unassisted top-right cheddar in the first minute. Answering a minute later, Scout Tweedie-Yates took the feed from his brother Sky and it looked as if we'd be treated to a back and forth battle all day long. Brett Menella fed Norstrom two minutes later for what would end up being a four goal, seven point day for the Denver-bound senior.
With four minutes left in the first quarter, Bellevue nursed a 2-1 lead, but then came a barrage of goals that foreshadowed the rains that would soon dump from the sky. Menella, Nordstrom, Spengler and Zervas all found twine in the space of three minutes and the quarter ended with Bellevue up 6-2. Overlake wouldn't score again until there were just four minutes left in the game, as Bellevue's defense limited them to just seven shots on goal in the first three quarters. Between the pipes, Austin Boyd saved five of those seven for Bellevue, while Chapp Grubb stopped 11 for the Owls.
Bellevue's defense was led by Sam Leggett's 10 ground balls, while Overlake's Devon Schmidt recorded 13 to go with his two goals and an assist. Sky Tweedle-Yates and Barrett Jenness tallied solo goals while Scout ended the game with two. For Bellevue, Eric Omri tallied a hat trick and Leggett, Linton,Spengler, Samuel, Deal and Alex Menella added solo shots after halftime. The game ended with Bellevue on top 16-6.
The weather wasn't the only nasty part of the contest. There was lots of hard play, and plenty of yellow laundry on the turf. Overlake had four infractions and Bellevue tallied nine and an ejection. On a sad note, Bellevue sophomore midfielder Drew Douglas broke his ankle late in the game and had to be carried off the field. His status for the rest of the season is unknown.
Clearly it's not just another game when these two Eastside clubs meet, and perhaps a different outcome awaits if Overlake fields a full squad in the rematch. Regardless, this is clearly a rivalry worth keeping an eye on.