Oakdale-Patterson games have become a must see in any sport and Tuesday night’s soccer game added to the storied rivalry, with the Tigers winning 4-3.
The game was tied at three in the closing minutes when sophomore Matthew Aldana scored the game winning goal in the 78-minute. After that score Oakdale (2-3) pushed the ball down field and a foul was called on Patterson near the goal leading to a penalty kick from Oakdale’s Nicolas Cazares. Cazares’ kick went left and would have forced overtime, but his attempt was blocked by junior goalkeeper Angel Espinoza to seal the victory.
“It was his first game back from a showcase [college recruitment camp] it was a good coincidence that he came back this game because of injuries at that position,” said boys soccer head coach Luis Torres.
The Tigers offense didn’t take much time to put points on the board, scoring the first goal by senior striker Jonathan Gallardo off a Sebastian Gomez assist in the 20-minute mark. Oakdale would get their only goal in the first half, 20 minutes later by junior Jayden Courtney. After a foul was called in the box, senior forward Johan Mendoza would convert a penalty kick into a 2-1 halftime lead for the Tigers.
“In the second game of the year we were able to see a little more of a challenge for us, we played different formations each half and I think we found what we need to see second half specifically, and a lot of their goals were mistakes by us,” said Torres.
In normal Oakdale fashion they made the second half more physical through their defense, pressing the ball in an attempt to shutdown Patterson’s offense. They were to tie the game early in the second half when Nicolas Cazares scored in the 55-minute. The tied game didn’t last long, just as in the first half Patterson retook the lead when Mendoza found Matthew Aldana in the middle of the field, scoring only a few minutes later to put the Tigers up 3-2.
The game was far from over because the Mustangs kept fighting, and once again had tied the game in the 75-mintue on a goal from senior Joel Gonzalez, tying the game at 3.
Tuesday’s win gives Patterson their second win in as many years against Oakdale. “At first it felt like each win against them because they took us out in the quarterfinals or semifinals [sectional playoffs], but Oakdale has always been a good program. It’s good that we have that competition and that we built a good a relationship with them because now we get to see what they have early in the season because more than likely they’ll be in playoffs, and we’ll see them again.”
Patterson boys’ soccer will be competing in a weekend tournament at Pitman High School, their first match will be Friday at 11 a.m. They will be competing against a high scoring Weston Ranch team providing a great tune-up before league play starts December 8th, home against Atwater at 5:30.