|The Pumas prepare for kickoff|
The Kitsap Pumas on a three game winning streak after they defeated the Snohomish Skyhawks with a dramatic goal 26 seconds from time. They were missing veteran and key player Taylor Hyde, who is out for the remainder of the season after undergoing surgery on his hip, but the team was able to rally and get the job done despite being a bit “rusty”, to quote the official facebook page of the Kitsap Pumas.
The Pumas started off the first quarter two goals down to the visiting team until Greg Miley successfully broke through the Skyhawks’ defense and knocked the ball past the keeper. The Skyhawks’ goalie had already made some fantastic saves but he was unable to keep the ball out of the back of his own net. With about six minutes left in the quarter, Snohomish’s number four was carried off the field with what appeared to be a nasty knee injury. His players told me after the game that he was going to be fine. After the restart of play, Pumas assistant coach Justin Stoddard scored a fantastic goal off of a corner kick to put the Pumas level. With just 48 seconds left to play, the Skyhawks’ netted a third and the quarter finished 2-3 to the visitors.
The pumas didn’t start the second quarter well. Defender Ryan Meherg was sent to the penalty box with a blue card for a hard tackle on the Skyhawks’ attacking midfield player. The call was harsh and the Pumas were unable to hold on during the Skyhawks’ power play and they conceded a goal off of a deflection. With eight minutes to go, Matt Friesen came close to scoring after a great show of individual skill but the goal would come from Greg Miley as he struck his second with a minute to go. It was a fantastic strike many of the fans were left wondering how he has managed to slot it in. The half ended with a Skyhawks blue card and the Pumas down 3-4.
|Puma Fans pose at half time|
The second half saw the exponential decrease in the quality of officiating. Several hard tackles from behind went unpunished and blue cards were shown for mild tackles or a mere tangle of legs. By the end of the third quarter, both sides were chomping at the bit and within touching distance of a win.
Goals from Justin Stoddard, Chris Andre, Scott Forbes and a third for Greg Miley secured the dramatic home win for the Pumas. Unfortunately, with three minutes to go, Puma defender Cisco Cinceros was helped off the field after he was slide tackled by his own players in a dramatic defensive flurry in the Pumas box. Two minutes later, with the score level at 6-6, Greg Miley scored off of a deflected free kick with 26 seconds to go much to the delight of the fans. The victory maintained the Pumas unbeaten streak and