The Lindbergh Eagles boys soccer won its third straight game dating back to April 5 with a 5-0 win over cross-city rival Renton on Tuesday.
“They brought it as a team. It wasn’t about one player dribbling and not passing. It was beautiful build-ups from the back, from the midfield. It was a variety of game plans and tactics to get a bunch of different goals,” said Head Coach Adib Altallal of the April 18 game.
Lindbergh improved its record to 7-3-2 on the season placing in second behind one-loss Sammamish. Renton, on the other hand, had a three-game win streak snapped by the Eagles, but remains right in the thick of the playoff hunt.
The Eagles swept Renton in the 2023 season series, out-scoring the Redhawks 7-0 over the two games. This season Lindbergh has three clean-sheet victories, two of them against their closest opponent.
“It was good but we still have to be focused. We can’t just be happy, we have to get the guys to stay focused and keep winning,” said senior Hugo Kore.
Before the game Tuesday night, Lindbergh had its senior night festivities. On the varsity roster, the Eagles have 10 seniors.
“They worked as a team, they were there for their seniors. The seniors showed up on their night. It was beautiful to see,” Altallal said.
To start the game the Eagles were all over the Redhawks. At times, it seemed as if Lindbergh was playing with 12 players on the field, there were not easy possessions for the Redhawks early on.
The first goal for the Eagles came in the first 10 minutes. A ball sent into the 18-yard box from senior Mario Sosa-Blanco found the foot of Hugo Kore who scored with a fantastic bicycle kick. That wouldn’t be the last time Kore’s name would pop up on the stat sheet in the game.
“You don’t see goals like that,” Coach Altallal said.
Kore said he had his focus on replaying that goal. “It was amazing, I hope someone got it on video,” he said.
Lindbergh scored a second goal three minutes later, building on their momentum. Senior Yishak Bereket drove the ball into the back of the net from near the top of the 18-yard box for an early 2-0 lead for the Eagles.
The rest of the first half the two sides went scoreless over the 28-minute span. But in the second half, Renton came out with more energy than it had all first half.
“We were up 3-0 against Foster and couldn’t win the game. We took that experience and were able to learn from those mistakes … Just like we scored two early goals, they could easily do it in the second half,” Altallal said.
The Redhawks never recorded a shot on target during that spell of play but controlled possession. But once Lindbergh slowed the Redhawks down, they took over the game and put it out of reach.
Midway through the second half Kore was in the middle of things once more. Kore found a loose ball in the penalty area and put it away, bolstering Lindbergh to a 3-0 lead.
“He was really good. He was taking his chances, bodying off players and willing to shoot whenever they gave him a glance at goal,” Coach Altallal said.
Goals would come in bunches for the Eagles. As the temperature dropped at Renton Memorial Stadium, Lindbergh wanted to put the game on ice. The Eagles tacked on another with under 20 minutes to go, this time Kore was on the assist as senior Anthony Acevedo put the cross into the goal for a 4-0 lead.
With not much time left in the game, senior Agustin Pernet got in on the action. Pernet sent a shot from almost 30 yards away past the Renton keeper, putting the finishing touches on a complete performance 5-0 from Lindbergh.
Renton needs to stay in the top five of the league to make the district tournament. With Highline, Sammamish and Tyee on the docket, there is a chance the Redhawks sneak in.
Lindbergh has now clinched a spot in the postseason tournament. For the Eagles to win the 2A KingCo title, the team needs Renton to beat Sammamish as well as take down Sammamish on its own. The Eagles barely made the postseason last season making the district tournament as the lowest seed.
“I feel like we can beat them right now. We just have to be ourselves and play like we did today,” Kore said on taking down Sammamish.
Head Coach Adib Altallal said he knows how key it is to keep the success rolling for the Eagles.
“It’s really important to keep our momentum going. It’s all about making it to the district tournament, which we’re almost there… It’s about maintaining momentum whether it’s a close loss or big win as long as we work together and finish strong. That’s what it’s about.”