PUYALLUP — Skyview took an indirect route to the lead in Friday’s Class 4A boys soccer semifinal match.
But there was no detouring the Storm from their path to the state finals.
Sean Price scored twice from free kicks and Skyview beat Central Valley of Veradale 4-1 at Sparks Stadium. The Storm will shoot for their first soccer state title at 4 p.m. Saturday against Central Kitsap of Silverdale.
“It’s well earned,” Skyview coach Jenn Johnson said after her team improved to 15-4 and reached the program’s first state final.
A rugged first half produced little offense until the final seconds when a high boot from one of the Bears led to the first Storm goal. A dangerous play by a Central Valley player inside the penalty area did not result in a penalty kick because it was a non-contact foul.
Price made sure that didn’t matter. Hayden Schuh took a touch on the ball and Price ripped it into the goal 17 seconds before halftime.
“I was just going for the far post. They left it wide open,” Price said. “The keeper was lined up behind the wall (of defenders). We played it really fast and I just put it right in.”
It was the first scoring chance of the game for the Storm, and it significantly changed the tenor of the tussle.
“About 20 minutes into the match, the boys started to find each other and I just knew that it was a matter of time until we were going to finish,” Johnson said. “I could feel it.”
The feel of the game was clearly different after Price scored again less than five minutes after halftime.
The second goal came from more than 40 yards up the right wing. Price floated a left-footed free kick into the 6-yard box that eluded Central Valley goalkeeper Alex Yoseph and fell under the cross bar.
“I didn’t realize it was going over everyone and straight into the goal,” said Price, whose celebration consisted on one raised arm. “It’s pretty crazy.”
With a two goal-lead, the Storm was the more settled team.
“It was a physical game all along,” Schuh, a midfielder, said. “We came out and played our game in the second half and took it to them. We just settled down and just played to feet, played balls to our guys instead of playing to space. We just really turned it on.”
And poured it on.
Austin Horner made it 3-0 from a long Cole Howard throw in, and a Skyview cross was knocked into the goal by a Central Valley defender for the fourth goal.
The Bears’ Justin Alcata answered the own goal with one for the Bears, but with 13 minutes remaining it was too late to knock the Storm off course.
SKYVIEW 3, CENTRAL VALLEY 0
Goals (assists) — Sean Price (free kick), 40th minute; Price (free kick) 45th minute; Austin Horner (Cole Howard), 55th minute; own goal 67th. Goalkeeper saves — Evan Laws 5.
Goals (assists) — Justin Alcata, 67th minute. Goalkeeper saves — Alex Yoseph 4.
Halftime — Skyview 1-0.