It was a reminder for the Wolf Pack (7-0-1, 3-0-1 Tri-City Athletic League) that the other TCAL teams can still shake up the league standings.
Senior stopper Manuel Lopez, one of the West team captains, said this point of the league season is when the Wolf Pack — two-time defending league champions — has to renew its focus on staying in first place.
“This year we’re confident, but we shouldn’t let it get to our heads. We should keep on working hard to stay up there,” he said.
The Vikings (4-4-6, 0-2-3 TCAL) matched West’s speed and intensity on Tuesday. The Edison midfield exploited hesitancy in West’s passing game, and the Vikings were quick to get in position on defense the entire game.
Senior goalkeeper Dan Baratta added that even though the West defense identified Edison’s best threats to score, the Vikings kept up the pressure.
“We just need to keep up the intensity. We didn’t have it this game,” Baratta said. “Every other game we’ve pressured. When we can keep that up, we can go far.”
Edison scored first on Javier Macias’ shot off a corner kick in the eighth minute. Edison continued with the pressure and a few more shots, which Baratta blocked.
West finally worked its way though the Viking defense as Shawn Frisbie passed from the right side of the field to Alex Valencia in the middle. Valencia in turn got it to Miguel Madruga, who made the shot from the left to tie it up in the 20th minute.
West kept up the offensive pressure for the rest of the first half, but Edison took a 2-1 lead after a cross from the right drew Baratta out of the goal and Edison’s Brian Tovar made the shot with two minutes left in the half.
West kept up its attacks in the second half, but the Edison defense became more stubborn. The Wolf Pack tied it up in the 24th minute when Frisbie sent a free kick to Valencia on the right, and Valencia passed to the middle where Waseem Latifi made the shot.
Millennium 1, Big Valley Christian 1
The Millennium boys soccer team held onto first place in their league this week with a tie on Monday, Oct. 1, against the visiting Big Valley Christian of Modesto.
The tie keeps the Falcons undefeated in the combined 10-team Central California Athletic Alliance/Mountain Valley League, and on a pace to pursue another league title.
Big Valley (4-2-2 CCAA/MVL) scored first in the first half and the Falcons (10-4-1, 7-0-1 CCAA/MVL) tied it up in the 20th minute on a goal from freshman Nick Yanke. Millennium kept the offensive advantage in the second half.
But the Lions were quick to get in position on defense and were able to swarm over the Falcons offense any time Millennium got close to the goal, forcing the Falcons to take long shots, which went high or wide.
Millennium coach Alex Gonzalez said that the league season has been encouraging after the Falcons went 3-4 in pre-league play.
“Overall, we’ve had significant improvement with every player,” he said. “The main thing is everybody knows each other and how they play. It just all came together at the beginning of the season.”
“We have some really good talent with the freshmen and sophomores,” he said, adding that the juniors and seniors provide good leadership, while the underclassmen make up more than half of the team.
Lathrop 1, Kimball 0
The boys soccer team (2-15-1, 0-6-1 Valley Oak League) finished the first half of VOL play with a loss Tuesday, Oct. 2, at Kimball High.
The Lathrop team (7-4-4, 1-2-4 VOL) denied Kimball any offensive opportunities, and allowed just four shots on the Spartan goal. Kimball goal keeper Juan Cardenas had eight saves for the night.
Lincoln 3, Tracy 2
Tracy High’s boys soccer team has had some rough breaks to start of the San Joaquin Athletic Association season. On Friday, Sept. 28, the Bulldogs lost 3-2 to Lincoln at West High’s soccer field.
It’s the Bulldogs’ (2-4-1, 0-3 SJAA) third league loss in a row, each by a one goal margin. Tracy also lost 3-2 at Franklin High in Stockton on Sept. 21 and a 2-1 loss at Lodi on Sept. 26.
“The last three games we’ve played really competitive games,” said junior forward Cristian Ramos. “We need a little more concentration. We’re still in it. Every team in the league is at the same level. There’s no one team that’s way better than the others.”
Tracy’s game against Lincoln (3-0 SJAA) on Friday started off good for the Bulldogs as they scored first in the 26th minute when senior Paul Mayes took a shot from the left. It hit the crossbar, but Ramos was in position to score on the rebound.
Lincoln’s Jose Saucedo scored a minute later to make it a 1-1 tie.
Lincoln took a 2-1 lead after Saucedo pushed past the Tracy defense for a one-on-one shot against Tracy junior goalie Jacob Gonzalez, who went after the ball as Saucedo tried to take a shot.
Officials called a foul on Gonzalez, giving Saucedo a penalty kick. He shot it into the left side for the score.
Tracy put another into the net in the 36th minute, with Mayes passing to Ramos, who made the shot.
Officials ruled that a foul on Lincoln happened before the shot, and instead of counting the goal gave Tracy a free kick.
The Trojans got the ball away from the goal without Tracy being able to make a shot.
Tracy tied it up again at the start of the second half as senior Byron Munoz made a shot off of Cameron Divoky’s corner kick. Lincoln made it a 3-2 game when Saucedo headed in a corner kick in the 56th minute.
Tracy coach Phil Kalis said it was a frustrating loss, especially because one of his team’s goals was called back even though the foul was called in Tracy’s favor.
“You can’t blame the referees but we’ve had tough calls in every game,” Kalis said. “It’s just really hard to overcome that game after game.”
• Contact Bob Brownne at 830-4227 or firstname.lastname@example.org.