Prior leads Eagle River boys soccer past Chugiak
Wolves beat rival for first time in school history
Eagle River’s Kevin Waterman, left, and Chugiak’s Sam Liebersbach battle for a loose ball during a match March 31 at The Dome. The Wolves won 3-0.
STAR PHOTO BY MIKE NESPER
Patrick Prior scored two goals to lead Eagle River High to a 3-0 win over Chugiak for the first boys soccer win in school history over the Mustangs on March 31 at The Dome.
The victory was also the team’s first win of the season and first for first-year head coach Max Solodkii. With the win, the Wolves improved to 1-3 in the Cook Inlet Conference while Chugiak fell to 1-3.
“It’s a good feeling,” Prior said of beating the Mustangs.
Prior scored on a long feed from fellow senior Kevin Waterman to give Eagle River a 1-0 lead after the first half. He notched a quick strike early in the second half after a blocked Eagle River shot came right to Prior, which he buried in the top left corner.
Prior said his second goal stunned Chugiak.
“I think they were kind of shocked by it,” he said.
Waterman sealed the victory for Eagle River with a goal in the waning minutes of the game.
Solodkii said Eagle River sustained a high level of play throughout the game.
“I didn’t want to let up,” he said. “You can never underestimate the other team.”
Solodkii said he was proud that the Wolves continued to play hard in the second half.
“We kept the intensity up,” he said.
Playing as one unit keyed the win, Prior said.
“We just played good as a team,” he said. “Good team ball.”
The Wolves’ work ethic was rewarded, Solodkii said.
“They worked pretty hard,” he said. “They deserved to win.
“Hard work pays off,” Solodkii added. “That’s the biggest thing.”
Solodkii said there was no need to motivate his team heading into the first of two games against rival Chugiak this season.
“You could tell there was a determination at the beginning,” he said.
Solodkii said Chugiak looked fatigued after suffering an 8-0 loss to Dimond two days earlier.
While Prior provided the offense to win, Solodkii credited the entire team with sticking to their game plan.
“Everyone put in the effort,” he said.
Chugiak’s next game is against South on Tuesday, April 10 at 6:30 p.m. at The Dome. Eagle River doesn’t play again until April 12, when the Wolves battle Bartlett at 6:30 p.m. at The Dome.