Boys soccer starts with three wins and a tie

Boys soccer at EPHS got underway on Sept. 2 at North Valley,
where the Eagles were victorious, 3-2.

North Valley  scored
20 minutes into the game on a corner kick, even though Eagle Point had
dominated possession.  Junior Juan
Palomares tied it with a left footed shot just before halftime.  About 10 minutes into the second half, Dario
Madera passed a great ball to Andres Tavarez, who finished a one‑on‑one with
the goalie.  Tavarez scored again on a
pass from defender John Navarro.  Instead
of crossing the ball, Tavarez fired a shot just under the crossbar.  N.V. scored on a breakaway with less than 10
minutes remaining, but the Eagles  were
able to hold on for the win.

Thursday, Sept. 4 was the first home game. It was against
Marshfield and ended in a 

2‑2 tie.  Despite many chances for both teams, the
first goal of the game came on a penalty kick. 
Marshfield was fouled in the 27th minute just inside the penalty area,
and converted the PK.

Fifteen minutes into the second half, a Marshfield forward
took advantage of a defensive miscommunication and calmly volleyed the ball
over the head of goalkeeper Hernan Torres. 
Only two minutes later, Eagle Point 
scored on a free kick cross from 40 yards out.  Madera hit a great ball into the six yard
box, and  Tavarez stepped in unmarked to
volley it past the goalie. 

A minute later Eagle Point narrowly missed tying the game
when Juan Pulido was unlucky as his shot hit the post on a cross from Ernesto
Esquivel.  Goalie Hernan Torres made a
key save on a one‑on‑one breakaway to keep the game close.  With one minute to play, Sophomore Tyler
VanDyke dribbled through a couple of defenders at the top of the box and tucked
a beautiful shot into the side netting. 
The game ended 2‑2.

"I am proud of the character that this team has already
demonstrated.  It would have been easy to
get down on ourselves when we fell behind, but instead we just worked even
harder." said first-year coach Derek Dougherty. 
"It is great to have started the season with two hard‑fought games.  We will need the experience in close games
when conference play begins."

On Tuesday, Sept 9, the Eagles played under the lights at
the Eagle Point Football Stadium and gave the home town fans a 3-2 win.  It was a back and forth battle in the first
half, but remained scoreless.  Fifteen
minutes into the second half Alex Rodriguez sent in a corner kick that VanDyke
bicycle kicked toward the goal.  The ball
bounced off the back of a St. Mary’s defender and rolled into the left side of
the net.  Seven minutes later, Eagle
Point went up 2‑0 on a well placed free kick from Madera.  He hit the shot from 30 yards out before the
goalie and defense was set.  The shot was
perfectly placed in the upper left corner, just past the outreaching arms of
the goalkeeper.  A few minutes later, the
Eagles scored again to go up 3‑0.  A
series of nice passes ended with Tavarez sending a pass down the right sideline
to a streaking Alex Rodriguez who finished the one‑on‑one with the keeper.  Five minutes later St. Mary’s got on the
board with a beautiful shot from 25 yards out. 
The ball bounced out of the penalty box, where the St. Mary’s midfielder
blasted a volley past the goalie.  In the
last seconds of stoppage time, St. Mary’s scored on a scramble in the box. 

The game was the first game under the lights at the football
stadium for all of the players.  The
atmosphere was great with a lot of supportive and energetic fans.

The Eagles traveled to Illinois Valley Sept. 11 for another
non-conference game. This was a very one-sided game with the Eagles winning
8-0.Eagle Point scored four goals in each half, including two apiece from
Rodriguez, Esquivel, and Tavarez.  Juan
Palomares and Juan Pulido also tallied a goal each.  The goals were set‑up with great teamwork,
including two assists from Jose Rizo. 
Illinois Valley’s best chance at scoring sailed over the top when they
missed a penalty kick after a handball in the box. " I was also pleased with
the effort and performance of senior Christian Lazono on defense and in the
midfield," said Coach Dougherty.

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