Tyler Takeda/The Madera Tribune
Madera’s Ryan DaRocha gets ready to shoot on goal during Thursday’s victory over Liberty. He scored two goals in the 5-0 win.
Apparently playing through the rain didn’t hurt the Madera Coyotes boys soccer team’s offense during a 5-0 victory in Memorial Stadium against the Liberty Hawks.
The Coyotes scored three goals in the first half during a steady downpour. They must have liked the rain because they only put two in the back of the net in the somewhat dry second half Thursday.
While Madera head coach Nic Landeros was using the match as a confidence builder for his team, Liberty head coach Leonard Escalante was using it as a way to build up his team’s chemistry.
“Right now, we’re a little bit of individuals, but we’ll get there (to play as a team),” Escalante said. “We have a lot of young guys and a few older guys coming up from junior varsity. Their chemistry needs to improve by a lot.
“We have three starters that were hurt. It’s the beginning of the season we’re trying to see what we have and what our niche is.”
“That’s what we were looking for in scheduling these types of games is those big confidence boosters,” Landeros said. “We’re right there hanging with the Div. I schools. All of this is preparation for the CMAC. If we can get good confidence and a good run in form, we’ll have a good chance against Buchanan-Clovis on Tuesday. We have a chance to give them a game. That’s what we’re looking for.”
In their previous two games — against Atwater and Liberty — the Coyotes have outscored their opponents 10-1.
“We’ve been working hard on defending and not giving up silly goals,” Landeros said. “We’re going in the right direction.”
Jose Escalera scored the first of his two goals early in the match. However, it wasn’t until the first of Ryan DaRocha’s goal in the 33rd minute that opened the floodgates.
After DaRocha’s goal, Madera scored three goals in the next six minutes, including two in the second half.
“One of the things we’ve been trying to instill in the boys is once you get that first goal to stay hungry and to get more to be able to put teams away,” Landeros said. “That’s one of the mistakes we made in the Selma game. We got up and let them hang around.”
In the third minute, Nick Gonzalez got the ball on the left and sent it in front for Escalera. Escalera’s initial shot was blocked by Liberty goalkeeper Noah Clark. Escalera collected the rebound and shot it by Clark for the first goal.
Both teams battled through the rain with neither team getting on the scoreboard for the next 30 minutes.
In the 33rd minute, Jonah Hill found DaRocha in front. DaRocha shot into the right corner for a 2-0 lead.
Five minutes later, Clark made a diving shot on a close shot. Liberty couldn’t clear the ball out and Clark made another stop on the rebound. However, DaRocha collected the rebound and shot past Clark on the right for a 3-0 halftime lead.
Two minutes into the second half, the Coyotes struck again. Gonzalez collected the ball outside the goalkeeper’s box on the right side and shot from about 35 yards to the opposite corner. The ball clanged off the left post and deflected inside the right side of the net for the goal.
Two minutes later, the Coyotes put in their final goal o the match. Escalera got the ball in front and popped a shot over Clark. All Clark could do was watch the ball go over his head and bounce into the back of the net for a 5-0 lead.
However, Liberty kept Madera out of the net for the next 36 minutes, but couldn’t counter with any strong attacks of its own.