Playoff Recap: Girls’ soccer defeated by Coachella Valley in second round of CIF

Maddie Ozbourn

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The Foothill girls’ soccer season came to an end on Tuesday, Feb. 20 at the Ventura College field as the Coachella Valley Arabs bested them by one goal, the final score reading 1-2.

According to coach Jack Craig, the Dragons had a great season. They finished as co-champions in league with Santa Paula High School and made it to the second round of the California Interscholastic Federation (CIF) playoffs, greatly improving their record from the previous season.

The game began when the Arabs kicked off but Foothill’s defenders, specifically Sierra Anderson ‘19 and Sarina Christie ‘18, held Coachella to four shot attempts in the half; two shots were saved by goalkeeper Hailey Villano ‘19, but two goals were scored.

On the offensive end, Grace Combs ‘20, Gwynnie Redemann ‘18 and Alyssa Elias ‘19 each had a few opportunities, but Coachella’s defense worked to prevent the Dragons from getting many shots off. Foothill had only two attempts on goal in the first half, both taken by Combs. However, the Dragons were unable to capitalize.

According to Craig, Foothill’s “Achilles heel” all season was coming out slow in the first half, which was indeed the case on Tuesday night as they entered halftime down 0-2. However, the second half consisted of many more opportunities for the dragons.

Elias got a shot off a few minutes into the half but missed, followed by a shot from Foothill’s goalkeeper, Keara Fitzgerald ‘20, off of a penalty drawn by Angie Albarran ‘19.

The Dragons’ defense held the Arabs at their two goals, while on the offensive end, Elias took a shot that bounced off the right crossbar, and Redemann had a well-aimed kick from the side of the goal, but Coachella’s goalkeeper saved the goal both times.

During extra time due to injuries, it was Albarran who got the Dragons on the board with a shot from the middle of the field at the 20-yard line. The excitement, however, was short-lived, for the referee declared the game over within seconds.

Craig was proud of the “team effort” and the fact that the Dragons never gave up, especially the three seniors who “played their hearts out.”

“I think we have a lot to build on,” he said. “Except for our three seniors, our varsity team is coming back, so I´m looking forward to great things.”

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