Redemption for one as Gilroy stomps Vikings

It was the first half and the Gilroy and North Salinas girls’ soccer teams were tied 0-0 in an early-season league showdown Thursday at Mustang Stadium.

That was when Gilroy’s Nubia Diaz De Leon knocked in the game’s first goal. Only problem was that it was a goal for the Vikings.

“I tried to kick it out and it just hit the side of my cleat,” the sophomore said. “But I knew if I kept my head in the game and tried my best, we’d accomplish great things … and we did.”

They did indeed.

Against the 8-1-2 Vikings, the Mustangs rolled off four straight goals and walked away with an easy 4-1 victory.

And with the game still in the balance at 2-1 midway through the second half, take a wild guess at who scored the goal that put the game away for Gilroy?

None other than Diaz De Leon.

“I guess I got it back for us after I scored one for them,” she said with a laugh.

After her own goal, the Mustangs (11-4) responded around 10 minutes later as Alysha Davis notched her first goal since returning from a quad injury that sidelined her for several non-league games.

“We didn’t get down,” the senior forward said, “because we knew they didn’t really score.”

On Gilroy’s second goal, Joann Olivo-Pedroza barely missed on her shot before Kristie Figueroa knocked in the ball mere seconds later.

Then, just two minutes after Diaz De Leon scored her real goal, she assisted on Stephanie Glenn’s score that made it 4-1 Mustangs.

As for the team’s defense, Gilroy completely shut down the Vikings’ potent offensive attack. North Salinas was averaging nearly five goals a game and sophomore Tania Hernandez led all area players with a remarkable 27 goals.

She and the Vikings were shut out this time.

“I just told them to play defense really tight and really aggressive,” said GHS head coach Jose Rodriguez said. “And that’s what they did.”

Gilroy, which won a grand total of zero games in league last year, won its second consecutive TCAL match and improved to 2-1.

The Mustangs will gun for win No. 3 next Wednesday at Live Oak.

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