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Skyline vs Eastlake - 4A State Championship Recap

Congratulations to the Eastlake Wolves in finding redemption and glory in their 15-10 victory over the Skyline Spartans at the 4A State Championship at Starfire Complex. Story by Michael Thornbloom.

The Wolves came out strong with two goals in the first four minutes of the quarter. Skyline maintained their composure by winning the next face-off and calmly setting themselves up so they could keep the ball moving. In classic Spartan fashion they created a nice hole to get themselves on the board providing them with the momentum they needed. Three more Spartan goals followed shortly after making it 4-2, leaving Eastlake’s defense uncharacteristically lost for answers.

An Eastlake goal came towards the end of the first quarter but a turnover off the faceoff to Skyline gave the Spartans one more scoring opportunity that they happily capitalized on putting them ahead by two heading into the second quarter. Skyline continued the pressure with another pair of goals three minutes into the second taking a commanding 7-3 lead. At this point it was looking like Eastlake wasn’t getting a break, failing to force any turnovers or grab any groundballs on their side of the field, but this game was far from over.

Eastlake head coach Chris O’Dougherty made some match-up adjustments on defense and just when the Spartans thought they had the lead they needed, the Wolves began to show their teeth. A 3-goal run followed quickly after Skyline run while Eastlake’s defense found their rhythm as they were settling into this game ready to win.

The Spartans were able to wrangle in two more goals desperately trying to hold onto their lead but Eastlake was plugging any open hole in their defense, preventing Skyline from charging in. The Wolves closed up the half with an additional goal making it a 9-7 game going into the final half, although they were down in score they definitely were not losing this game.

The second half only got ugly for the Spartans when Eastlake tied the game within three minutes of the third with two goals within a minute of each other. Skyline would find a goal shortly after but it would be the last one they score for the remainder of the championship. With a Wolves defense in full swing and an offense firing on all cylinders, the Spartans watched Eastlake score goal after goal over a period of 18 minutes of game as they went scoreless. Eastlake put on an impressive comeback and proved they were the best 4A team in the state earning them a well-deserved state championship cup.

Eastlake ended the game with seven different players recording a goal. Freshman attackman Simon Breecher (3g, 3a), junior midfielder Anton Hvidtfeldt (3g) and senior attackman Andrew Edwards (3g, 3a) had a hat-trick each contributing to their amazing win over Skyline.

The Spartans were able to keep Eastlake senior midfielder Hunter Klinge to one goal allowing the rest of the team to shine. O’Dougherty couldn’t be more proud of the culture that has developed in his team. When one player is getting covered the rest of the team steps up making this squad very dynamic.

“If someone’s getting shutdown we just go to the next guy and they buy into that and that’s what we continued to do all year.” Said O’Dougherty. “We had to climb back in there kind of shows what kind of character our team has from our senior leadership then this influx of freshman having success.”

O’Dougherty now looks to the future and he has 13 promising underclassmen that will only get better over the course of a fruitful legacy. “It starts with one to form a dynasty right?” said O’Dougherty. “So I think the program is where we want it to be and the senior class wanted to go out on top.” Can’t get anymore on top than winning the cup, another congratulations to the Eastlake Wolves on an amazing year.

Story by Michael Thornbloom.