The Scotts Valley High School soccer team struck early, but could not maintain momentum in the second half in a 1-1 tie with the Aptos Mariners on Wednesday night.
The Falcons, playing at Aptos on January 22, had a handful of early scoring opportunities and capitalized in the 23rd minute when senior James Marshall found the back of the net on an assist from senior captain Charlie Stock.
The goal was the result of a takeaway by defender Noah Bryd who found Stock who carried the ball up the field before finding Marshall for the goal.
“We’ve been working on our intensity,” Marshall said, noting that the goal was a result of putting pressure on the Aptos players to force a mistake.
“Charlie bringing it up and finding James, it was picture perfect,” said Head Coach Brian Terwilliger. “How many opportunities we did create, it was just good to see.”
Scotts Valley led at halftime thanks to several nice stops from keeper Ryan Edwards, including a full-out dive to his right to save a goal with less than two minutes left in the half. Edwards finished with 16 saves, many coming in the second half.
Stock agreed the Falcons played a strong first half, but lost focus in the second half.
“We were moving the ball smart and simple instead of taking chances,” Stock said. “Then we started getting tired and letting the refs decisions get to us.”
In the second half, the Mariner’s pressure defense forced the Falcons into some poor passes and less possession of the ball.
In the 48th minute Marshall went down with a sprained ankle and within a minute, Aptos took control of the ball and scored after two rebounds.
The remaining 30 minutes were a back and forth affair with both teams making runs, but with few actual scoring opportunities.
“We need consistency and focus all the way through,” Terwilliger said. “We try to implement that focus in practice and in games.”
Terwilliger said this team has shown improvement through the preseason and early league schedule.
“We’re just about helping each other out and just trying to do that consistently for 80 minutes.”
Stock said the team will continue to improve.
“We have a good group of guys and we have good chemistry,” Stock said. “We like each other on and off the field.”
The Falcons are 5-3-2 including 1-2-1 in Santa Cruz Coast Athletic League play. They take on Soquel High on Friday, Jan. 24 after press time.
Cougars fall to Knights
The San Lorenzo Valley High School boys soccer team fell 1-0 to Soquel High on Wednesday, Jan. 22. During the evening contest, Garrett Kustin made 13 saves for the Cougars.
Soquel scored in the 15th minute, and SLV was unable to penetrate the Knights stout defense.
The Cougars host Harbor Friday, Jan. 24 after press time.