by CAROL GULLSTAD, Mercer Island Reporter Contributor
The Islanders improved their league season record to 2-2 after a strong performance against Newport Tuesday, Sept. 29 at Mercer Island Country Club. Erik Raisys led the Islanders with three goals while six other Islanders recorded two goals each for the 15-6 win.
The Islanders took charge from the start as Jacob Guedel connected with Ford Witman to score at the 5:30 mark. Less than one minute later, Sammy Vacca followed with a goal. The middle of the quarter was a defensive battle as both teams drew ejections. With 1:09 left, Islander Sam Nair connected with the net and the Maroon Squad ended the first quarter with a comfortable 3-1 lead.
The team upped its offensive tempo in the second quarter, racking up five more goals to build a commanding 8-2 lead for the half. Newport showed some life as they outscored the Islanders 4-2 in the third quarter. However, the final quarter was all MI as the Islanders scored five goals while holding the Knights scoreless. The Islanders’ final play of the evening was a steal by Carson Coe, who swam the length of the pool to score an uncontested goal to put an exclamation point on the victory. Hunter Peshkin recorded four saves and Cole Nielsen one save for the game.
The previous night at MICC, Mercer Island came within striking distance of last year’s state runner-up Curtis, falling 10-7. This was the second time the Vikings and Islanders had faced off in the young season. The Islanders looked much improved compared to their previous contest with Curtis, which Mercer Island lost 19-8 on Sept. 8.
The fired-up Islanders came out strong, jumping to a 3-1 lead at the close of the first quarter. Curtis responded the next quarter, tying the game 4-4 going into the half. Curtis pulled away in the second half, outscoring the Islanders 3-1 in the third and 3-2 in the fourth. Conner Vacca led the Islanders with four goals in the effort. Hunter Peshkin had a strong defensive showing, registering 13 saves. The Islanders will get one more bite at the apple against the Vikings before the regular season ends.