Franklin Pierce’s boys soccer team is getting used to living on the edge.
And coach Steve Anderson is OK with that – as long as it’s what he calls “the right side of it.”
Just days after rebounding from a two-goal deficit with two minutes left against Tyee, the Cardinals rolled to another heart-stopping 3-2 victory – this one against Sehome in the first round of the Class 2A state playoffs Tuesday at Franklin Pierce Stadium.
With 10 seconds left, senior defender Terell McDonald took advantage of Sehome goalkeeper Drew Ronson being caught in the middle of a swarm of players and shot the ball into the goal.
“I saw the open goal, I saw the time, and it had to go in,” McDonald said.
McDonald said he has missed that same shot in practice, but this time, he got lucky.
“We thought we were the underdogs, but we don’t die,” he said. “We’re like a cat – nine lives.”
The Cardinals’ comeback stunned Sehome coach John Sylvester, who said that his team’s performance was not as sharp as usual.
“Nine times out of 10, we’d win that game,” he said. “It amazes me what happens at state.”
Franklin Pierce (12-4-2) scored first on a 15-yard shot by senior forward Ryan Chamberlin in the eighth minute. It followed a near-goal by sophomore midfielder Ryan Sandoval, whose shot slipped out of Ronson’s hands, but he recovered.
Senior midfielder Jimmy MacQuarrie got the equalizer for Sehome (13-4-3) in the 31st minute, then tied it again at 2 in the 73rd minute. MacQuarrie also had a goal waved off in the 70th minute because of offside.
Sylvester disagreed with the call, saying he saw it as “a judgment call.”
Franklin Pierce junior forward Sanford Stabbert had given the Cardinals a 2-1 lead in the 45th minute when his cross unexpectedly hit the post and rolled into the goal.
Anderson, who has coached the Cardinals since 1983, said this year’s team has a unique ability to stay in games despite having graduated several seniors last year.
“We’re not the most talented team in the world,” he said. “We know that. But we play hard, and at the end, we somehow make it happen.
“I don’t know if it’s always going to be that way, but this is two games in a row that we’ve figured out a way to win.”