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The Day After Soccer: So much more ahead

Luck, close games and ties highlight third games of league play

Posted: January 19, 2011 10:17 p.m.
Updated: January 20, 2011 4:55 a.m.

Sometimes, you just have to get lucky.

And Valencia girls soccer took advantage of a "lucky goal" to get past Canyon 1-0 on Tuesday to remain in second place in the Foothill League.

It was McKenna Sekeres' late goal that lifted the Vikings' league record to 2-0-1.

Sekeres disrupted a goalie clearance during open play and managed to knock it into the net.

Valencia head coach Sean O'Connell called it a "hustle goal, but a lucky goal," though he felt it came as the result of continuous offensive pressure.

"I think we dominated the majority of the possession and we made the more clear-cut scoring opportunities in the game," O'Connell said.

It was a bounceback for Valencia, which struggled in its previous game in a 1-1 tie with Golden Valley.

Saugus is off to the early league lead with a 3-0-0 start in league play after a hard-fought 3-2 victory over Hart on Tuesday.

The Centurions haven't had much trouble so far, but will have to travel to play Valencia on Friday.

West Ranch (1-1-1), on the other hand, got a 1-0 victory over Golden Valley on Tuesday thanks to Amanda Dailor's unassisted goal.

"Offensively, we were on the attack," said West Ranch head coach Cami Bangasser. "We were just connecting passes, connecting to feet and we got (Dailor) the ball."

But with the amount of close games and ties, it's far too early to draw any real conclusions about the young Foothill season.

"We play each game as though we're the underdogs regardless of how we stand," Bangasser said.

On the boys' side, one game has probably best demonstrated the level of intensity this year's league competition brings.

The teams who finished top two in last year's league standings, Canyon and Valencia, battled to a 2-2 tie on Tuesday.

The game featured everything from controversy, player confrontation, arguing with officials and scoring in the final minutes.

But while those two are duking it out for early league supremacy, a few other teams are waiting their turn.

Hart, which already beat Canyon last week, is coming off an impressive 4-1 victory over Saugus on Tuesday.

Four different players scored in the game, and only one, Andrew Trejo, was a senior. The others came from junior Sammy Reyes and sophomores Niko Ferrero and Gabe Robinson.

The Indians are now 2-1-0 in league, trailing only Valencia in the standings.

West Ranch holds the same record despite not playing to full potential so far - at least according to head coach Mo Burgess, after Tuesday's 2-1 win over Golden Valley.

"We can't just come in just because they're 0-2 and expect to win," Burgess said after the game Tuesday. "We have to come out and fight."

These are just the opening rounds.

There are seven more rounds, check that, games to play in the league season.



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