Boys’ soccer: Mount Si, Cedarcrest head into playoffs on winning note

Mount Si High School’s boys’ soccer senior class – Reed Paradissis, Henry Clark, Mateo DiDomenico, Will Niemela, Drew Harris and Jared Davies – and their families appear all together for a photo prior to last night’s Senior Night Wildcat boys’ soccer game with Issaquah. (Rhett Workman/SVSJ)

It has been a special season on the pitch for Mount Si High School’s boys’ soccer team. The Wildcats finished the regular season last night celebrating the contributions of their senior class, and going into the postseason on the right note – with a come-from-behind win.

The Wildcats overcame a goal early in the second half to double up the Issaquah Eagles 2-1 and, in addition to clinching the Kingco 4A title, locking up the regular season Wes-King district title earning them the top overall seed into next week’s Wes-King bi-district tournament. Mount Si will host Kamiak next Tuesday night in the playoff semifinals.

“We’ve got one banner down and we’ve got two more to go,” said a happy Mount Si coach Darren Brown, as the team was awarded the Wes-King regular season trophy following the game. The Wildcats recognized their six seniors (Reed Paradissis, Will Niemela, Mateo DiDomenico, Drew Harris, Jared Davies and Henry Clark) prior to the game, and a few of those seniors proved to be factors in this one.

After Issy’s goal in the 46th minute opened the scoring, Paradissis found a feed from teammate Jake Jimenez and rammed it home with his head just underneath the crossbar and into the net to tie things just two minutes later in the 48th. Then, with the time ticking down to the end of regulation, Harris chipped a ball in towards the goal in the 76th minute and it found its way into the goal past the Issy goalie to give Mount Si the lead for good. It was a satisfying win to close out what has been a perhaps historic regular season – we can’t remember another team who did this good at Mount Si in boys’ soccer, and the 2010 team is probably the closest comparison to this one.

Paradissis is thrilled to be part of this as a senior. “I think it’s just been exciting,” he said. “This year is even more exciting because we’re doing so well.” He added there will be some things he’ll miss when he moves on to Washington State University this fall, where he plans on playing intramural soccer and possibly majoring in food sciences, perhaps with an eye on becoming involved in the culinary world. “First the players, second the field,” Paradissis said. “I don’t know how many games I’ve lost here but I know it’s not very many.”

As for Harris, he’s also going to be playing intramurals – over at Central Washington University – this fall, where he anticipates majoring in business with an emphasis on construction management. He doesn’t plan on giving up the sport. “Soccer is one of my favorite hobbies and it’s the sport I grew up playing,” he said. He had this message for future Wildcats. “Don’t be afraid to be a leader and take chances,” he said.

Not only was it a special night for the seniors, it was also a special night for their head coach. Brown earlier this season informed both his team and the Journal that he planned on stepping down as the coach of this team, a post he has held for some 15 seasons now, following the season. Brown, when he was first hired, also taught at Mount Si. But in recent years, he trained for, and obtained, administrator certification and is now the school’s athletics director, a post that had been held for many years by fellow MSHS administrator Greg Hart. A large amount of responsibilities associated with that position have resulted in him leaving the coaching gig. Brown also had been coaching girls’ soccer, but those same conflicts prompted him to step aside from that role prior to the 2017-18 season.

Mount Si players hoist the Wes-King bi-district regular season trophy after the program was presented with it in a brief postgame ceremony. Mount Si with their win finished the regular season 13-1-0. (Rhett Workman/SVSJ)

“This is my identity,” Brown said. “Before I was an AD, people identified me as the soccer coach so it’s taken some time for me to let it sink in but with the new school opening and my right hand guy who’s been with me since day one the program is in good shape so I feel comfortable about the decision.” That right hand man he speaks of is longtime Mount Si assistant Ben Tomlisson, who is likely to be named as the head coach following the season. Brown, in relinquishing the girls’ position, appointed Sophie Rockow, who played and coached under the longtime MSHS head coach, to take that program on, and she has worked hard to continue the excellence Brown established in that program. It is expected that Tomlisson, who is a social studies teacher at the school who is originally from the United Kingdom – and has used those previous ties to the U.K. to help establish a cultural exchange between the Mount Si program and the school he used to work for across the Atlantic, in the community of Malpas, in England – will be able to maintain a lot of that same success.

But before the changeover takes place, there’s some unfinished business to take care of. And that begins tomorrow night as Mount Si will head up north and have a look at Jackson High School, a team they might face in a Wes-King title match, as they finish up Wesco league play. The Timberwolves will be hosting Lake Stevens at Everett Memorial Stadium, and have earned that league’s top seed into the bi-district playoff tournament. After that scouting trip, it’s into the weight room and film room to get set for the Kamiak Knights, who Mount Si will face in their semi as noted next Tuesday. Game time for that at MSHS is 7:00 p.m.

Cedarcrest defeats Murphy and finishes fifth in district RPI
Cedarcrest closed its regular season at home with a 1-0 win last night over Archbishop Murphy in Duvall and finished Wesco play at .500 at 7-7-0. Stats were not available. That .500 seed usually would mean a mid-level district playoff berth, but with the district being a bit down it appears this year, the Red Wolves ended up with a strong fifth seed into the Northwest District 2A playoffs, and will open those tomorrow night against 12th-seed Lakewood. The game is a loser-out game and begins at 6:00 p.m. at CHS’ stadium in Duvall. A win will send them on the road to fourth-seed Burlington-Edison on Saturday. The Red Wolves will need to advance into the finals in order to make state.

Rhett Workman

About Rhett Workman

Rhett Workman is the editor of the Snoqualmie Valley Sports Journal. Workman is a veteran sports journalist, having covered Snoqualmie Valley sports for nearly a decade with the Snoqualmie Valley Record newspaper before starting up the SVSJ. Workman's coverage has earned the support and respect of Valley coaches, players, parents and fans, and the SVSJ continues the standard of coverage that Workman brought to the Valley Record.
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