Soccer Wilson

Boys’ Soccer: Wilson Plays Downey To A Draw

The562’s soccer coverage for the 2022-23 school year is sponsored by Beach Futbol Club.

The562’s coverage of Long Beach Wilson Athletics is sponsored by Joel Bitonio, Class of 2009.

A late equalizer off the head of Ian Bond salvaged a point for Wilson boys’ soccer in a 1-1 non-league draw with visiting Downey on Monday night, but the Bruins were left wanting more.

“I think it was closer to a loss,” Wilson coach CJ Brewer said. “Given where our trajectory is going, I feel like that (performance) was a step down. There were moments where we played down to their level and their speed.”

Wilson (1-2-1) was without three starters but outshot Downey 10-5 and had the better of the ball for most of the game. However, the Vikings took a lead in the 17th minute against the run of play when Eddie Gallardo took advantage of a miscue by chipping it over the Bruins backline.

Support The562.org

Downey (0-2-1) earned the first few shots of the second half before Wilson earned a string of quality chances around either side of the hour mark. Luke Garza worked the left flank well for the Bruins and he was one of four Bruins to have a shot on goal.

The fourth was Ian Bond and his game tying goal in the 65th minute came off set piece service from goalkeeper Gavin Pool-Harris near midfield.

“We’ve been working on the set pieces around the 50-yard line when Gavin tries to play it around the penalty spot and we just try to get a knick on the ball,” Bond said. “I haven’t been able to do it yet this year, and finally I got that little skim redirect and it just flared off my head and when I looked back it was in the goal.”

Bond was also part of the backline that limited Downey to two quality shots on goal.

“We know we have the players, the skill and the talent,” Bond said. “It’s just all about that communication and coordination.”

Wilson is hoping to work on that cohesiveness this week when they take a long road trip to play De La Salle and Reedley. Both opponents won CIF section championships last year.

“They’re very talented but they are not united,” Brewer said of his squad. “This is a crucial weekend for them to go sleep in a hotel with teammates and have the bond you get from that so when there is an adverse moment it doesn’t break us because we’re tightly bonded. The Moore League gets really intense and if you’re not bonded you can’t handle that intensity.”

Moore League play starts Dec. 14 when Wilson visits Jordan.

VIDEO: Wilson vs. Downey, Boys’ Soccer
JJ Fiddler
JJ Fiddler is an award-winning sportswriter and videographer who has been covering Southern California sports for multiple newspapers and websites since 2004. After attending Long Beach State and creating the first full sports page at the Union Weekly Newspaper, he has been exclusively covering Long Beach prep sports since 2007.