SOCCER: Late goal lifts rival Alisal past Gilroy in league opener

Gilroy's Miguel Orozco battles with Alisal for the ball during

Lorenzo Vasquez’s header in the 69th minute propelled the Alisal Trojans to a 3-2 triumph over Gilroy High, spoiling the Mustangs’ Tri-County Athletic League debut Thursday night in Gilroy.
The Mustangs had two weeks to prepare specifically for their league rivals, having their nonleague set of games conclude Dec 30. And the marquee matchup between the league’s previous two champions lived up to its billing – as expected.
Gilroy came out crisp and did well in its efforts to deliver the Trojans (9-0-3 overall, 2-0 TCAL) their first loss of the season, gettng the visitors on their heels through the first 20 minutes of the first half. Establishing possession in Alisal’s territory, the Mustangs created three quality scoring chances, but didn’t finish.
The Trojans, however, struck for a pair of goals one minute apart to all of a sudden grab a 2-0 advantage midway through the half. Jose Camacho and Benjamin Carmona, who headed home a corner kick, were credited with the goals.
“In that first 20 minutes, I don’t think (Alisal) knew what hit them,” GHS head coach Armando Padilla said. “Our guys just have to learn how to sustain. We kind of fell apart in the second 20 minutes and they were able to take the lead.”
In need of a pick-me-up, the Mustangs recevied the boost they desired as leading goal scorer Jonathan Diaz De Leon poked one past Alisal goalie Fabian Nunez seven minutes before intermission.
“We found our groove, found our rhythm,” Padilla said.
David Valencia booted home the equalizer with a strong right foot in the 59th minute. It remained 2-2 until Vasquez changed that with his header for the Trojans, who are ranked 16th in the state and No. 2 in the Central Coast Section, accoring to maxpreps.com.
“Alisal has been a powerhouse over the years and is going to play 80 minutes,” Padilla said. And you know, we are almost there. And I think by the time we meet again, we will be.
“Overakll, I’m proud of the kids effort. They played within the game play, played hard and played intelligently,” Padilla said. “The kids are a little upset because they have worked hard over the last two weeks and they wanted to win this one. But there is plenty of soccer left.”
The Mustangs (3-6 overall, 0-1 TCAL) have Palma at home Jan. 17 before heading to Hollister on Jan. 19.

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