YAKIMA, Wash. – For the second weekend in a row, the Oly Town Artesians men came back from a 1-0 deficit and scored a late game winner. This time it was defender Collin LaBranche heading in a beautiful pass off of a free kick that gave the Artesians a 2-1 victory over first place Yakima United at SOZO Sports Saturday night.

Just like last Saturday, Oly Town surrendered an early goal to their opponent and had to play catch-up. Luis Valle put Yakima United up 1-0 in the 10th minute on an assist by Johnny Ramirez. Yakima continued to pour on the pressure but the Artesiand defense held firm and Trevor Thompson tied the game up, 1-1, in the 18th minute by pouncing on a loose ball and chipping it over Yakima keeper Luis Birrueta, who had strayed too far from his goal chasing the loose ball. Both teams kept up the pressure for the rest of the half, but the first 45 ended 1-1.

20 minutes into the second half, the Yakima crowd thought the Hoppers had taken the lead but the missed by the slimest of margins and went into the side netting. Oly then had an opportunity right in front of goal but Jason Fairhurst couldn’t wrap his foot around a high bouncing ball and the game remained knotted up 1-1.

In the 75th minute, after a foul by Yakima, the Artesians unleashed a long swinging ball into the box off of a free kick and Collin LaBranche beat Birrueta to the ball and headed it home to give Oly the 2-1 lead with 15 to play. After some nervy moments including a shot just over the bar in stoppage time, the ref blew the whistle and the Artesians completed a 2-1 win.

The win moved Oly to 2-1-0 at the midpoint of the shortened EPLWA season and into first place in the South Division pending the Vancouver Victory/Tacoma Narrows game to be played on Sunday.

Next up for the Artesians is a second round Washington State Super Cup game against Seattle Lone Stars FC on Wednesday night at Black Hills High School. First kick is set for 7:00 PM.

GOALS: ’10 – Luis Valle – Yakima United, ’19 – Trevor Thompson (Max Hauser) – Oly Town, ’75 – Collin LaBranche – Oly Town

DISCIPLINE: Jose Marquez (Yakima) – Yellow, Max Hauser (Oly Town) – Yellow

LINEUP: 1 – Sawyer Price (GK), 2 – Manny Nicasion, 7 – Connor Desmond (’63), 8 – Allen Escalante, 9 – Trevor Thompson (’74), 10 – Alec Zimmerman (’74), 11 – Jason Fairhurst (’63), 13 – Dylan Chavez, 15 – Nate Boatright (’68), 16 – Collin LaBranche, 17 – Max Hauser (’80)

SUBS: 3 – Amri Mwenyeheri, 4 – Marcos Santos (’63), 5 – Tino Pantaleon (’63), 6 – Sammy Taffola (’74), 12 – Jordan Zimmerman (’68), 14 – Craig Johnson (’74), 18 – Carlos Rodriguez (’80)

PUYALLUP, Wash. – The Oly Town Artesians women, playing their first road game in team history, dominated the second half and scored an equalizer in the 55th minute, but couldn’t put another in the back of the net and finished with a 1-1 draw against Washington Premier.

After a couple early nervous moments, the Artesians took control with a couple of good chances and the majority of possession, but ten minutes in, a series of corners after an Oly defender cleared a ball off the line led to a goal by Olivia Lowen to give WA Premier a 1-0 lead.

Oly’s best chance of the half came just moments later when the WA Premier keeper made a save but the rebound fell directly to Haley Roberson. The Premier keeper recovered, thought, and made a terrific diving save to keep them ahead. Angela Celedon entered the game midway through the half and made an immediate impact. She just barely missed twice and was tripped on a breakaway just outside the box but didn’t get the call and the half ended with Washington Premier up 1-0.

Right out of the gate, Keila Kruse was an inch away from a goal off of a corner kick to the back post before Haylee Ward equalized with a couple of moves that got her around the Premier keeper and tied the game up 1-1 in the 55th minute.

From there, it was a story of near misses. The Artesians had their chances down the stretch but never could find the game winner and settled for a 1-1 draw.

Emily Sorenson and Olivia Brock combined to keep Washington Premier to just the one goal and the backline, including Delaney Smith and Nikki Williams, did their job to keep the game winnable. Celia Scruton was named Oly’s Player Of The Game for her work in the middle.

Oly Town moves to 1-0-1 in their independent schedule and will travel to Bellevue next Saturday to take on Kirkland FC at Wilburton Hill Park. First kick is set for noon.

GOALS: ’10 – Olivia Lowen – WA Premier, ’55 – Haylee Ward – Oly Town

LINEUP: 1 – Emily Sorenson (GK), 2 – Nikki Williams, 3 – Haley Roberson, 4 – Kailey Utley, 6 – Jamie Hughes, 7 – Chloe Narolski, 10 – Lily Dose, 12 – Delaney Smith, 13 – Julia Hass, 14 – Haylee Ward, 18 – Celia Scruton

SUBS (all used): GK – Olivia Brock, 5 – Keila Kruse, 8 – Chloe Benson, 9 – Angela Celedon, 10 – Lily Dose, 11 – Ashlee Gormley, 15 – Sarah Boatright, 16 – Maria Reyes

The Oly Town Artesians men opened the Washington State Super Cup with a 4-1 win over the Harbor Force on Wednesday, May 26th. Jason Fairhurst scored twice and Allen Escalante and Angel Trejo-Delgado added goals in the Round One victory. The Artesians will next face Seattle Lone Stars FC in Round Two of the Cup on Wedneday, June 16th at 7:00 PM at Black Hills High School.

Charis Wilson was there to photograph the game and brings you this gallery…

Click Here to see full gallery