The562’s soccer coverage for the 2022-23 school year is sponsored by Beach Futbol Club.
The562’s coverage of Millikan athletics in the 2022-23 school year is sponsored by Curtis Boyer.
The562’s coverage of Jordan Athletics is sponsored by John Ross, Class of 2013.
After a tumultuous season tested their mettle and composure, Millikan boys’ soccer beat Jordan 6-1 on Wednesday to win their first Moore League title since 2018.
“It feels great to bring it back,” Millikan captain Isaac Machuca said. “People said our program went down but we’re here to show that it’s back up. From the first second of the season we named our group chat ‘2023 Moore League Champions’ so we manifested it. We wanted it so bad and we proved it today.”
Millikan (13-4-7, 8-1-3) is riding an eight-game unbeaten streak and needed to win its last three regular season games against Lakewood, Compton and Jordan to clinch the title.
The Rams dominated Jordan but the game started slowly after a long Senior Night ceremony.
“We had to touch the ball around and play with each other,” Millikan striker David Villanueva said. “The first 10 minutes we were playing slow, we were playing afraid because of everything else going on, but then we stuck in and won.”
Millikan peppered the Jordan goal with a sting of four shots and two corner kicks around the 15 minute mark, and then Villanueva scored off Nathan Farkhondeh corner kick in the 21st minute.
Aaron De Leon found Jalen Segal for a one-touch goal in the 30th minute before Juan Vasquez banged home a rebound two minutes later to make it 3-0 at halftime.
Jordan’s Brandon Sanchez scored a cracking goal for the visitors in the second half. Millikan’s Sergio Guerrero, Rafael Gonzalez and De Leon also scored after halftime so the six Rams goals came from six different players.
“I think we have a really deep team,” Millikan coach Jeff Schofield said. “If you look at our games we had so many different people contribute with goals and defending. And this group of seniors is a special group, I’m super proud of those guys to see this thing out.”
Millikan goalkeeper Riley Cabarles and the back line led by Machuca limited Jordan to only five total shots.
“I saw him this morning in my class at 9:30 a.m. and he was already hyped for the game,” Schofield said of Machuca. “I actually plucked him out of a PE class when he was a freshman and playing at an academy. I said, ‘Why don’t you just hang around the team’ and eventually he wanted to play high school because he loves this type of stuff. He’s such an awesome kid. He’s something special and I love that guy.”
De Leon, who finished with a goal and two assists, thinks the hotly contested Moore League made his team better.
“I think it’s good to have competition, there’s like five teams that could win it so it motivates each team to keep working,” De Leon said. “The competition, the smack talk from team to team, it all motivated us. It was heart. Every time we said something we accomplished it. We didn’t just talk the talk.”
“It was our season, we knew from the beginning when we beat Cabrillo and we showed it tonight,” Villanueva added.
The CIF Southern Section playoff brackets will be released on Saturday.