Senior Night extra special for both members of Mount Si boys’ soccer team’s Class of 2014 as Wildcats take care of Bellevue

Mount Si High School’s boys’ soccer team set themselves up for a run for the Kingco championship after scoring a nice win on Senior Night, thanks largely to their two members of the Class of 2014.

Both seniors – Aaron Baumgardner and Alex Dolewski – scored goals, helping Mount Si to a 3-1 win last night over the Bellevue Wolverines at Mount Si High School. The win kept the Wildcats tied for first in the league with Liberty, setting up a huge game with Mercer Island Friday night on the island that, if Mount Si can win, will likely set up a league title game next Tuesday against the Patriots at Liberty High School.

Wildcat coach Darren Brown believes his two seniors will be hard to replace. “I love those two guys. They’re special to our team and they’re great leaders. They’re guys that lead by example and lead on and off the field and we’re going to miss them greatly,” he said.

The scoring opened in the second minute, after a handball in the Bellevue penalty area was called by officials, setting up a penalty kick attempt, which Dolewski converted to put Mount Si on the scoreboard. Additionally, a red card was issued to a Bellevue player out of all of that, resulting in the ejection of that Wolverine and the Wildcats playing with a man advantage the rest of the game.

It took awhile, but Mount Si took advantage in the 39th minute, first half stoppage time, when Baumgardner fired a drive past the Bellevue keeper into the upper right corner of the net, giving the Wildcats a big 2-0 advantage going into the second half. The two teams exchanged goals in the second half, with Evan Betz recording the Mount Si tally, and the Wildcats avoided the trap against one of the league’s worst teams and put themselves in prime position for a chance at the league crown.

Dolewski has enjoyed his time in the program. “It’s been fun,” he said. Dolewski will be headed to Bellevue College this fall, and he has this advice for future Wildcats. “Keep your grades up,” he said, and that, for him, comes from personal experience, as he missed a large chunk of this spring’s season thanks to academic-related issues. Alex’s brother, junior Nick Dolewski, enjoyed his time with his older brother this season on the varsity team. “It’s a lot of work. He expects a lot out of you and it just makes you play better,” Nick Dolewski said.

As for Baumgardner, his last games mark the end of a long relationship between the local family and the Mount Si program, a relationship that spans 11 seasons. Aaron is the youngest of three brothers who have gone through the Wildcat program – Adam, then Eric, now Aaron. Aaron thinks that it will take some getting used to for his family. “It’s all coming to an end and it doesn’t feel real to us yet,” he said.

A very important part of that relationship has not been on the field, either. The Baumgardner parents, Greg and Dawn, have been very active behind the scenes in helping the program. Brown made a note of that as well. “They’ve been huge. They’re the backbone of our program, ‘cause they’re both behind the scenes kind of people,” the coach said. “Dawn’s done so many things for the soccer program that I don’t think a lot of people really realize. She’s super, super special and sweet and I can’t say enough good things about her and I am so thankful for what she’s done.”

Aaron Baumgardner will most remember his time playing with his older brother. “Probably coming in as a freshman and getting to play with my brother (Eric),” he said. “That was a pretty dominant team back then and I was blessed to play for them and play with him.” Aaron will be following a similar path that his brother took, to college soccer. Aaron will be playing for PLU this fall and majoring in either biology or civil engineering; Eric played collegiately for Humboldt State in California until an incident at a pre-season party in 2012 forced the cancellation of that fall’s men’s soccer season and subsequent discipline of members of that team. He, following that, transferred to Central Washington University, and is not currently playing men’s soccer at that school.

Baumgardner had this message for future Wildcats. “There’s always room for improvement. You can never settle for enough,” he said.

Scoreboard:

Cedarcrest 9, Granite Falls 0: Chuy Espinoza, Nik Reierson and Austin Bebee all scored a pair of goals each to lead the Red Wolves to the Cascade Conference home blowout at Cedarcrest High School in Duvall. Chris Cole, Thomas Burgess and Brandon Mowry also scored goals to pace CHS, who had assists from Cole, Bryan Bodnar and Austin Paxman; Paxman alone assisted on three goals.

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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