The Moore League girls’ soccer season got back underway after the holiday break on Tuesday afternoon.
Millikan 2, LB Poly 1
Intelligent design and tactics helped the Rams hand the Jackrabbits their first loss while taking over first place in league. The Millikan midfield connected well in the first half while building a lead, and played well behind the ball in the second half to secure the victory.
“This year it’s a different mentality,” Millikan coach Tino Nunez said. “Some of these girls have that winning mentality and they’re willing to put in the dirty work. The main focus in the second half was to stay disciplined as a group and that will always give us a chance.”
This is Millikan’s third consecutive win over Poly after three years without a victory over the Jackrabbits. The Rams (8-6-5, 5-0-0) visit Wilson on Saturday to finish the first round of league action.
Millikan took a lead on an eighth minute corner kick from Emily Tamayo. Karli Slater headed the ball towards the far post where Samy Sierra headed it over the outstretched arms of Poly goalkeeper Kira Ybarra for the opening goal.
Poly (7-1-0, 5-1-0) had plenty of chances to score in the first half, and Skylar Herrera netted he equalizer in the 20th minute with a cracking shot from the top of the 18-yard box.
The Rams responded well with possession and took the lead for good in the 38th minute when Sunha Park beat her defender on the left flank. Her low cross into the box found Olivia Tostado, and the senior midfielder sent it home after a deflection off of a Poly defender.
After a tactical shift at halftime, Tostado and freshman midfielder Josie English played behind the ball for the majority of the second half. They helped cut down any Poly counter attack, and did a nice job possessing the ball instead of giving it right back to the Jackrabbits.
“In the second half we changed to a diamond formation in the middle and that created more space to keep the ball going,” Tostado said. “Even if we didn’t get any shots off, that’s ok, as long as we kept the ball.”
Millikan outshot Poly 7-4 in the first half, and the Jackrabbits were only able to outshot the Rams 3-1 in the second half. Their best chance to score came in that final minutes when Herrera’s attempt from distance went just over the cross bar.
Poly played physically down the stretch, much like during the comeback win at Wilson last month, but instead Millikan took the extra contact in stride.
“We were able to stay calm when they fouled us, and not counteract that,” Tostado said. “We just played our game and didn’t get into theirs.”
“You start expecting that, especially towards the end of games,” Nunez said. “Our midfield is small, but they were getting back up every time after fouls. You have to have the fight and determination to say that this is going to be different this time.”
Wilson 1, Cabrillo 0
After dominating the game against a packed-in defense, the Bruins (7-4-3, 4-1-0) got a goal from Holly Hughes in the 70th minute to secure the road victory. Gracie Dobie provided the assist, and goalkeeper Daniella Uchio didn’t need to make a save for the shutout win.
Lakewood 7, Jordan 0
The Lancers (4-8-0, 3-3-0) got a much needed win at home while Tatiana Bullock collected the clean sheet in goal. Freshman Lauren Aguilar scored a hat trick for Lakewood.
Lakewood at Wilson, Compton at Poly, Jordan at Cabrillo