The Madera South Stallions used pressure early in the match and picked up an early goal to roll to a 4-0 victory over St. Joseph’s out of Santa Maria in the Southern Section.
The Knights played earlier Wednesday and lost to San Joaquin Memorial-Fresno, 5-0. They traveled about a half-hour north to face the defending two-time Div. II Valley Champions and were handed a 4-0 defeat.
The Stallions got a goal from Angelica Gutierrez in the 18th and 34th minute for a 2-0 halftime lead and Madera South cruised from there.
“I saw they were touching really well for the first 10 minutes,” head coach Ramon Delgadillo said. “We started pressuring them and not letting them control the ball. We tried to play our style of game. After we lost to Buchanan (Dec. 14), I concentrated on our defenders. We made our defenders stronger and got two shutouts. Hopefully, that will help us in our season.”
Maria Leal and Rachel Ramirez added goals in the second half for the win, although the Stallions were playing without some players and with junior varsity players playing up.
“We had three starters that went out of town and I lost some players for grades,” Delgadillo said. “I didn’t have five players, but brought up some JV players. Two of the players adapted to our game really well.”
The Stallions took the upper hand in the 18th minute of the first half. Gutierrez settled the ball on her left from about 25 yards out. She shot to the far post. The ball hit the post and went inside the near post for the goal.
Madera South added an insurance goal in the 34th minute. Gutierrez and Itzel Rodriguez executed an give-and-go in the middle of the field. Gutierrez took the pass from Rodriguez to the left. Gutierrez got in front of her defender and beat the keeper with a shot to the far post and a 2-0 halftime lead.
Four minutes into the second half, the Stallions added to their lead with a little help from St. Joseph’s. Leal sent a shot high on goal. The ball hit the lower part of the crossbar and the ball went down. Yulianna Lomeli was battling with a defender in front of the goal and the ball hit her defender’s foot and went into the goal for the score. Technically, an own goal, Leal gets credit to add to the lead.
In the 23rd minute, Lomeli had a prime opportunity to get a goal of her own. She took the ball down the left side, got in front of a defender and sent a shot by the oncoming St. Joseph’s goalkeeper. However, a St. Joseph’s defender worked back and stopped the ball from crossing the end line thwarting Lomeli of a goal.
The Stallions put the final tally on the scoreboard in the 26th minute. Leal sent a shot on goal. The ball was blocked out, but Ramirez was there to send the rebound shot by the keeper for the 4-0 victory.