2021 has come and gone in a flash. Halfway through October, we felt it was time to get the season reflections down in writing and take a deep dive into what made 2021 for Kirkland FC a success.
"We were happy with the fact that we played 17 competitive games this season. Outside of that, there is work to be done", Siedenburg explains. "I have a lot of people to thank for what we were able to achieve this season, finishing in the top half of a very competitive division. The WWPL in 2021 saw some great teams get fielded, and we tip our hats to Wenatchee All-Stars. They showed class, character, and a competitive spirit in their title-winning season. They are the new gold standard in our league, and we aim to battle right there at the top with them.
Coming into this season off the back of 2020, nobody had a clue what to expect. There was no roadmap, no previous experience to look back to as a guide to navigating what truly were uncharted waters. "We didn't know who would be willing to participate in contact sports at the beginning of the season. We just knew physical activity, building relationships, and the comradery you get from being part of a team was too important to push to the side for a second year straight," said Trent. "The clubs in our league all agreed to move forward with this season, and it was just a matter of finding the player who wanted to participate."
There was a slew of Goats from the 2019 season that were eager to join, but there were others who decided to not come back. "We supported every decision made by our current and former players this last season," head coach Cooper Gray explained, "and we were thankful to be able to field a team. It was easy to see how important getting this backup and running was to the guys." Tryouts saw a whole new crop of players step up and join the club, which was very encouraging. Many of the new players made great contributions to the success that the Goats saw on the field. It's exciting to see what those players can bring in 2022.
Kirkland FC finished in 4th place in 2022, accumulating five wins, five draws, four losses, and 20 points in the table. The Goats also finished in the quarterfinals of the Washington State Super Cup, losing to UPSL side Sporting International. The bar for success at Kirkland FC was set at a high level in 2018 after winning the inaugural WWPL championship, and it's something the players are longing to achieve again. "I've been with the club since its founding," says midfielder Jake Morse, "and we have always put a good product out on the field that is enjoyable to watch. 2022 is the time to buckle down and get the results that we know we should get. Since that first season, we have felt like we have underachieved. In 2022, we will be winning or in contention for titles next season. You can count on it."
Though bold, that is the consensus from the staff and players. 2021 left a taste of 'unfinished business, and the goal is to rectify that in 2022.