The562’s soccer coverage for the 2022-23 school year is sponsored by Beach Futbol Club.
The562’s coverage of Lakewood Athletics is sponsored by J.P. Crawford, Class of 2013.
The562’s coverage of Cabrillo Athletics is sponsored by the Cohn Family.
Cabrillo has used its superior pace to be the highest-scoring Moore League boys’ soccer offense this year, and the Jaguars proved again why with a 3-2 win over visiting Lakewood in their regular season finale on Monday night.
The victory keeps Cabrillo (15-3-3, 8-2-2) atop the league standings but second-place Millikan only needs a win over Jordan on Wednesday to take the league title. The Jaguars are trying to win their first league championship since 2016.
“We’ve just been working as a team, communicating and working hard in practice every day,” Cabrillo junior Nathan Mosqueda said. “We lost to Millikan (in league play) but that didn’t bring us down, we kept our heads up and we just kept moving forward.”
Mosqueda, Javier Palomares and Bryan Moposita all scored in the first half for Cabrillo while adding to the league-high 70 goals for the Jaguars this season. Mosqueda said the wet playing surface at Cabrillo helped his side build momentum.
“Honestly I think part of it was the weather and slick field,” Cabrillo coach Pat Noyes said of the first half. “We moved the ball so well and so quickly that we were in sync and playing well.”
Cabrillo was utterly dominant in the opening 40 minutes while outshooting Lakewood 11-1. The Jaguars tallied three shots and a pair of corner kicks in the first 11 minutes, and the second corner kick at the 11 minute mark led to the opening goal. Ivan Torres sent in the short corner service where Palomares headed it home.
Mosqueda, Martin Robles Ruiz and Duane Baker created most of the Cabrillo scoring opportunities on the left flank by connecting short passes and running off of them. In the 25th minute, Robles Ruiz’s shot from the top of the box was blocked by a defender but fell to the feet of Mosqueda. The junior drilled his shot into the bottom left corner for a 2-0 lead.
“I think kind of deferred to (Robles Ruiz) at the beginning of the season,” Noyes said of Mosqueda. “I talked to him a few games ago and said, ‘I know there’s more of you than what you’ve been showing.’ He’s scored in the last three games. He’s taking guys on with moves that are way beyond any of the moves our other guys are doing right now. And he works on both sides of the ball. He’s a fantastic player.”
At the half hour mark, Robles Ruiz got off another shot from the top of the box and it bounced back into play off the crossbar. Moposita had his first rebound shot saved, and then poked home the second one.
Lakewood (7-3-6, 4-3-4) was much better in the second half. Junior Diego Perez got his team on the scoreboard in the 52nd minute with a slightly deflected shot from the left side of the box, and captain Jonathon Alvarez made it 3-2 in the 75th minute when he drew and converted a penalty kick.
“They were pretty bummed out after Friday (after a loss to Millikan) so we started slow and they took advantage,” Lakewood coach Alex Diaz said. “In the second half I told them to come out with pride and that’s what they did. They showed what they’re made of. It was too late but I’m really proud of the boys for coming back and showing some pride.”
Cabrillo goalkeeper Ezra Salcido made both of his saves in the second half to keep the Jaguars in front.
“We’re getting better and I hope we’re peaking at the right time,” Noyes said. “I just think it’s because we’ve been playing together more. You get these high school teams and they’ve been playing ECNL, academy, high level clubs or Sunday league and it just takes awhile to get everyone together. This is a really tight group.”
Lakewood finishes its regular season on Wednesday against Long Beach Poly.
The CIF Southern Section soccer brackets will be released on Saturday.