It was a big weekend for the two-time defending EPLWA Champion Spoke Shadow Men. They jumped to second in the table with 3-0 (Olympic) and 3-2 (South Sound) wins. These were true team wins, but they might not have happened without the contributions of Fernando Alvarez (offense) and Tony Watters (Defense). Both will receive a pair of EPLWA Rock’em socks to commemorate the accomplishment of being named Evergreen Premier League Players of the Week.
Fernando Alvarez (Offensive POTW)
Alvarez (Northwest Nazarene) scored two goals against the Olympic Force on Saturday and then got the winner in stoppage time on Sunday at South Sound. His weekend hat trick came despite having a defensive assignment in the first of the two matches.
“Fernando came off the bench as a defender in the game versus Olympic,” says Shadow head coach Chad Brown. “He made a tremendous impact. He was composed on both sides of the ball. He is new to the group and made his stamp on the game against the Force, who were a strong team.”
He was just warming up for his final weekend contribution. “Fernando started the game at South Sound and was steady all game long,” Brown says. “He started getting forward more as the game went on and his determination and willingness to work for the group was unbelivable.”
Fernando’s winner completed a dramatic Spokane comeback. About three minutes into the indicated four minutes of stoppage time a ball out of midfield by Spokane’s Brady Ulen drew Shock goalkeeper Evan Munn out to punch it away, but Alvarez won the challenge and nodded it over the keeper and off the bar. It bounded directly down and over the line for the Shadow’s thrilling winner, 3-2.
Tony Watters (Defensive POTW)
Tony Watters (Whitworth) posted a shutout in Spokane’s 3-0 win over the Olympic Force on Saturday. In a quick turnaround he was back in goal on Sunday afternoon against South Sound.
The Shadow led 1-0 when Watters let in a goal that most viewers, including Tony himself, thought could have been avoided. A long bouncing ball found its way home. Watters took full blame.
“Tony’s character is his best attribute,” head coach Brown says. “He took responsibility for the first goal. He thanked the team after the game for staying with him after the goal.The group laughed, because Tony’s penalty kick save was a major difference in the game.”
Yes, that’s right – Watters saved a 75th minute penalty kick try by South Sound’s JJ Schmeck. It would have given the Shock a 3-1 lead, but instead it remained 2-1 and gave Spokane a boost.
Brown was pleased for the two players. “These two guys along with the rest of the group come from quality programs that develop them as players but mold their character as people. Something our club values.”
The Shadow’s big weekend puts them back in the race and maintains their amazing unbeated away form. Spokane is 14-0-3 in 17 EPLWA contests on the road. “The selflessness of this group is unbelievable,” exudes Brown. “The two teams we played this weekend will cause problems for a lot of teams as they did us. I couldn’t be more proud to be part of such an incredible group of young men.”
About the Players of the Week honors
The Evergreen Premier League will be selecting an offensive and defensive Player of the Week each week during the 2016 season. The Players of the Week will be acknowledged with a pair of custom, unique socks featuring the EPLWA logo. The socks are from Rock’Em Apparel, the Official Provider of the weekly reward. The league worked with Rock’Em Apparel to finalize the look of the socks. The league logo is complemented by a rendering of George Washington in the State seal.
The phrase “Rock ‘Em” represents the willingness to achieve greatness; to go above and beyond limits,” says www.RockEmApparel.com.
Evergreen Premier League players will work to do just that for their clubs this season. The best of the best will have cool custom socks to show off around town for their efforts.