SNOHOMISH COUNTY, WA— Snohomish County Football Club travels north to face Bellingham United of the Evergreen Premier League this coming Saturday April 28 at 6 PM at Phillips 66 Soccer Park. Admission is free. Last year at the same venue the Steelheads dropped a 5-2 decision to the Hammers Reserves. This year BUFC promises to be featuring as many starters as they have available before colleges release their players on May 1.
Last weekend in Bremerton the Steelheads and Hammers played a 30-minute mini-match as part of a day-long jamboree. That tussle finished 0-0. SnoCo FC had some good early chances as rain drenched both sides.
“As a coach, I really respect Bellingham United as an organized, fast and dangerous team,” Steelheads Head Coach Dagi Kesim says. “We will respect them with their talents but we will not be showing up with lack of confidence. If we play a good defensive game we can definitely hang at that level. We are dangerous with our set plays. We will look for those opportunities.”
The Hammers have won 3 straight Western Indoor Soccer League (WISL) titles and finished second in the EPLWA in 2017, a single point behind the Seattle Stars. They are the kind of club that SnoCo FC hopes to one day become – competing on the pitch, supported by a community, and with a robust group of local businesses as sponsors.
The Steelheads offense is led in the early season by the two goals of Fabian Panduro, who has shown a knack for getting behind defenses and making calm finishes. The defense has also been solid thanks to the work of defensive midfielder Devin Shull (who also has two goals) and back line standout Logen Flem, among others.
Saturday is a whole new kind of challenge for the Fish. The Hammers are using the match as a warm-up for their 2018 EPLWA season opener the following week. They will have a meet and greet with their fans and a beer garden on site.