PREVIEW: Artesians Host First Place Hammers Sunday

Manny Nicasio and Jason Fairhurst | Photo: Sonia Purtteman

OLYMPIA, Wash. – The Oly Town Artesians return to Evergreen Premier League play when they host Cascade Conference rival Bellingham United on Sunday afternoon at Black Hills High School. Coming off of a 7-0 Washington State Super Cup victory and playing their first league game with new head coach Tom Boatright, the Artesians will look to avenge a 2-1 loss to the Hammers in week one and take a step forward in the conference playoff race.

Tickets for the game are just $8 for adults, $5 for kids 5-12, seniors, military and first responders, and free for kids under 5. We will have Cinco De Mayo serving concessions, the inflatable soccer dart board, the giant soccer ball for kids at halftime, games and prizes including Well 80 Brewhouse gift cards and more. You can purchase tickets at the gate or online at

The Artesians enter Sunday’s game following a 3-0 win over the Tri-Cities Alliance in Pasco in their last league game on May 19th. They then knocked off the ISC Gunners 7-0 last Sunday in the Washington Super Cup quarterfinals. Oly started EPLWA play 0-3-0 despite outplaying their opponents for a good portion of each game including a stoppage time 2-1 loss to Bellingham in their first road game of the season.

Surafel Wodajo leads Oly Town with two goals but the Artesians have spread out the scoring in EPLWA play with five other goal scorers. Jason Fairhurst scored twice in the Cup game and Manny Nicasio has provided an offensive spark, scoring once in league play, once in an Artesians Reserves game and once against ISC on Sunday. Defensively, Collin LaBranche was named EPLWA Defensive Player Of The Week for his performance against the Alliance and JJ Olson registered the shutout in goal.

Bellingham United leads the EPLWA’s Cascade Conference with 10 points and are undefeated with three wins and one draw so far. They host the second place Seattle Stars on Saturday before making the trip to Olympia. The Hammers added a nice offensive piece this season with former EPLWA Goal King Eleazar Galvan joining them. He has three goals through four games to lead Bellingham. Goalkeeper Hector Rodriguez registered a shutout in last week’s 0-0 draw against Tri-Cities last Sunday.

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