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Wildcats win again to keep heat on Jesuit

A 4-1 victory over Sunset keeps Westview with a point of the Crusaders
by: JONATHAN HOUSE, SHIRT PULLIN’ — Westview's Sean Pullin (right) battles with Sunset's Jared Stensland during the Wildcats' 4-1 Metro League win Monday night.

CEDAR MILL - Sunset had a couple of sloppy moments in the first half of its boys soccer game against Westview.

And the Wildcats made the Apollos pay, scoring twice on balls Sunset failed to clear, then adding two insurance goals late in the game for a 4-1 victory Monday at Sunset High School.

The win was a nice bounce-back for No. 5-ranked Westview (7-2-0 overall and 4-1-0 in Metro League play), which was coming off its first league loss to No. 2 Jesuit last Thursday.

'They gave us a few they shouldn't have,' said Westview senior forward B.J. Jenson, who had two goals and an assist. 'After the loss to Jesuit, I'm real happy we came out and got the job done. They're a good team.'

Sunset (3-3-2 overall, 2-1-2 in Metro play) closed within a goal on a score late in the first half, but couldn't manage the equalizer and surrendered two goals in the final two minutes that sealed the Wildcats' win. The Apollos came in having allowed just one goal in a 2-0-2 start to the Metro season, but gave Westview a couple gimmes Monday.

'We did pretty well the first four games and I guess we thought this was cruising time,' Sunset coach Jeff McAllister said. 'Westview came out and took it to us. They had some good opportunities.'

The first came 16 minutes into the game when senior midfielder Sean Pullin's cross from the left side got past two Sunset players that collided in an attempt to clear the ball out of the box. That allowed Jenson to run in for a hard shot from 15 yards out on the left side into the top-right corner for a 1-0 Westview lead.

'I had no idea it would get to me,' Jenson said. 'I'm surprised they didn't clear on the first touch. I just got lucky and finished it.'

Just more than two minutes later, Westview got lucky again when Sunset failed to defend its goal. Pullin's rolling corner kick carried past the mouth of the goal to the right post where senior defender Zach Bradford finished with a hard boot into the upper netting.

Sunset closed within a goal with 4 minutes, 45 seconds left in the first half. Senior defender Scott Gardner approached a free kick then ran through and Josh Herman followed by sending a shot from 25 yards out inside the left post and into the netting to make it 2-1.

'The keeper gave a little space to the right and I knew he would shift to the right so I went left,' Herman said.

Herman nearly evened the score 10 minutes into the second half with a free kick from 30 yards out on the left side that was grabbed by Westview's leaping goalkeeper Matt Dunham near the right post.

Twenty minutes later, Herman's free kick on the far right side was redirected by senior defender Brad Paik but sent over the cross bar.

Moments later, Herman had another shot off a free kick from 25 yards out in the middle of the field. Gardner pretended to adjust the spot of the ball as Herman ran in for a solid kick that sailed well over the cross bar.

'We put that together,' Herman said of the free kick play. 'We try to mix it up a lot, keep them on their toes and get their defense to guess.'

Despite the efforts, Sunset couldn't break through and Westview put the game away with a pair of late goals.

Jenson passed the ball to Rayes Herrera just inside the left side of the 18-yard box. Herrera beat the keeper with a shot inside the right post for a 3-1 lead with 1:26 left.

Moments later, Jenson got in close on the left side and banged a shot of the goalkeeper that deflected back to him for an easy chip into the middle of the net for his second goal.