Coyotes fall in first round
Last year, the Madera Coyotes girls soccer team eliminated the El Diamante-Visalia Miners in penalty kicks in the first round of the Central Section playoffs.
This year, the 11th-seeded Miners exacted a measure of revenge with a pair of goals within the first five minutes of the first and second halves to lift them to a 3-2 victory Tuesday over the sixth-seeded Coyotes.
“A lot of it has to do with just that desire to win, that grit and determination,” first-year head coach Cynthia Moreno said. “There’s still some hurt on their behalf.”
The Coyotes stayed in the match with first half goal from Jazzell Ruiz and a penalty kick goal from Ruiz late in the match, but couldn’t find the equalizing tally.
The Miners shocked the Coyotes with a goal just three minutes in the match. El Diamante got the ball on the left and sent a 25-yard shot on goal that sailed over the arms of Coyote goalkeeper Emily Lopez and into the back of the net.
Just seven minutes later, the Miners added another goal. They got a pass to the front and in front of the defender. The shot beat Lopez to the left side of the net for a 2-0 lead.
Madera came back to cut the lead in half in the 25th minute. Atiana Piñon got the ball on the right and sent a touch up to Ruiz, who was wide-open. Ruiz dribbled once and sent the ball into the right side of the net.
“You have to come out ready to play. We waited. As a coach, you tell them you have to go,” Moreno said.
However, five minutes into the second half, the Miners pressured the Coyotes’ defense and got the ball on the right and scored inside the near post to regain their two-goal lead.
“We had a lot of miscommunication throughout the game,” Moreno said. “That’s the one thing we talked about at halftime. We can only tell them so much. If they don’t do it, they don’t do it.”
Madera had their chances on goal to cut into the lead. Piñon got the ball on the left and carried it to goal, but her shot was stopped by the keeper. Piñon crossed a ball to Adriana Dana in the middle, but her shot went over the crossbar. Adela Alvarez had a free kick from about 35 yards out sail over the crossbar.
In the 36th minute, Madera drew a penalty kick with a foul in the box. Ruiz found the bottom right side of the net to cut the lead to one. However, the Coyotes couldn’t get another quality shot on goal and ended their season.