David Cook | Photo: Charis Wilson

OLYMPIA, Wash. – David Cook scored twice and goalkeeper JJ Olson made 26 saves in his return from injury for the Oly Town Artesians, but Bellingham rallied for three goals in the fourth quarter including the game winner with 17.5 seconds left to take a 5-4 victory on Saturday night at The Pavilion.

It was a tale of two halves, with the Artesians scoring first on Cook’s goal at the 9:53 mark of the first quarter and then adding their second goal on a Josh Dube strike with 1:11 left in the quarter. Oly Town built a three goal lead on a power play when Cook was able to body one in after a pile up in front of the goal. The Artesians added their fourth and final goal when the Boatright brothers hooked up with Nate smashing one home off a pass from Eli, and Oly took a 4-1 lead into the break.

But the second half belonged to Bellingham, with the Hammers taking 20 shots on goal over the final 30 minutes while limiting the Artesians offensively. Richard Henderson got United’s scoring started in the second quarter, scoring his 17th goal of the season with 6:44 to go in the first half. Christian Caro scored his first of two goals on a power play but that is all the Hammers could muster in the third.

The Artesians killed an early Bellingham power play in the fourth, but fouls caught up with them and Caro scored his second goal of the game just seven seconds into the penalty to make it a 4-3 Artesians lead with 6:51 left. After pulling goalkeeper Ike Onyeador and adding a sixth attacker, Nick Cashmere tied it up 4-4 with 2:15 left. Bellingham was shown a blue card 30 seconds later and Oly’s confidence swelled playing a man up near the end of the game. But Bellingham took advantage of a break off of a rebounded shot by Oly and Connor Moe smashed one past Olson to take a 5-4 lead with just 17.5 seconds left. They would hold on for the final few seconds to take the road victory in the regular season finale.

The Artesians wrapped up their league schedule but will host one more game next Saturday with Austin Kelley Night, an annual celebration of soccer in memory of friend and teammate Austin Kelley. First kick in the friendly between the Artesians and the Oly Legends is set for 6:30 at The Pavilion at The Evergreen State College.

Oly Town Artesians goals: David Cook (2), Josh Dube, Nate Boatright
Bellingham United goals: Christian Caro (2), Richard Henderson, Nick Cashmere, Connor Moe

Chris Pugh | Photo: Charis Wilson

OLYMPIA, Wash. – Oly Town Artesians forward Chris Pugh has been honored by Western Indoor Soccer League club coaches and operators as the Offensive Player Of The Week for his hat trick on Saturday night against the Oly-Pen Force.

Pugh, a North Thurston High School and Evergreen State alum, scored three times in the third and fourth quarters, sparking a run that cut a 7-1 Oly-Pen Force lead to just two goals, 8-6, early in the fourth. It was a hard-fought game by Pugh and both sides that saw the momentum shift massively twice over the course of just five minutes, and the Force eventually pulled away to register a 12-7 victory.

The 38 year-old has been with the Artesians since the 2015-2016 season, but only played in six games over the past two seasons due to injuries and other commitments. This season, he has played in seven of nine games and has scored seven goals. But most importantly, he brings solid, veteran leadership to a young and inexperienced squad that has struggled on the field. He does all that while being a father to two young children and working his day job with the State of Washington’s Department of Natural Resources.

Also honored by the WISL for Defensive Player Of The Week were two more Evergreen State College alums, Tacoma Stars Reserves’ Jeff Bader and Oly-Pen Force’s Greg Wolfe. Wolfe was an Original Artesian, playing in 16 games over two seasons before moving to Seattle. He scored twice, made five blocks and drew the key penalty that smashed the Oly Town comeback bid on Saturday. This is his first season back in the WISL since the 2015-2016 season.

Pugh and the Oly Town Artesians wrap up the regular season this Saturday night when they face Bellingham United at The Pavilion at The Evergreen State College. It’s Fan Appreciation Night, with games, prizes, giveaways and more all evening long. First kick is at 6:30 PM. The following week join us for a postseason friendly against the Oly Legends on Austin Kelley Night, an annual event to honor friend and teammate Austin Kelley. First kick for AK Night sponsored by HDR Inc. is also set for 6:30.

Chris Pugh | Photo: Charis Wilson

OLYMPIA, Wash. – Chris Pugh scored a hat trick and Christian Segovia added two goals, but after clawing back to within two early in the fourth quarter, the Oly Town Artesians couldn’t get over the hump and fell to the Oly-Pen Force, 12-7, in front of a big Wembley Soccer Shop Youth Soccer Night crowd at The Pavilion at The Evergreen State College.

Collin Tate got the Artesians off on the right foot, opening the scoring early in the first quarter, but Colin Ralston tied it up, 1-1, about two minutes later, sparking a four goal first quarter for the Force and a seven goal run into the third quarter. David Meherg scored twice during the run that put them up 7-1 with 7:39 left in the third.

The Artesians fought back, starting with a goal by Sasa Yodkerepauprai at the 6:57 mark of the third, Pugh’s first with five minutes left in the third, and then a three goal run over the first three minutes of the fourth quarter that cut the Force lead to two, 8-6, with 12:53 left. Segovia opened the scoring in the fourth with a goal just 30 seconds in, and then Pugh added another 30 seconds later. Segovia scored his second just over a minute later to get the crowd rocking and give them hope for a massive Artesians comeback.

But the Force stopped the bleeding on an Alex Hernandez strike with 11:56 left and then took control with a power play goal by Zurfluh after a controversial blue card was issued to Oly Town. The frustrated Artesians let the Force extended their lead to 12-6 with two more goals before Pugh scored his third with just 49 seconds left. The Force finished it off and took home a 12-7 victory.

The win moved the Force to 3-5-1 this season and into fourth place in the Western Indoor Soccer League with one game left to play. The top four teams in the league make the playoffs.

The Artesians dropped to 0-8-1 and will host Bellingham United next Saturday in their season finale. First kick at The Pavilion is set for 6:30.

Oly Town Artesians goals: Chris Pugh (3), Christian Segovia (2), Collin Tate, Sasa Yodkerepauprai
Oly-Pen Force goals: Jaisen Zurfluh (2), Colin Ralston (2), Alex Hernandez (2), Greg Wolfe (2), David Meherg (2), Joe Sammartino, George Bundy