The Foothill Dragon Press

Boys’ soccer stumped by Rio Mesa in home opener

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Boys’ soccer stumped by Rio Mesa in home opener

Keaton Dadigan

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A stunning Ventura sunset marked the start of Tuesday evening’s home opener for the Dragons. Foothill fell short to Rio Mesa 3-1 in a non-league match despite a strong first half effort.

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A stunning Ventura sunset marked the start of Tuesday evening’s home opener for the Dragons. Foothill fell short to Rio Mesa 3-1 in a non-league match despite a strong first half effort.

Sophomore Ezekiel Colby advances the ball. Credit: Grace Carey/The Foothill Dragon Press

Sophomore Ezekiel Colby advances the ball. Credit: Grace Carey/The Foothill Dragon Press

It took the Spartans 38 minutes to score the first goal. A scoreless final two minutes gave the Spartans a 1-0 lead going into the halftime break.

During the first half of play, Foothill had four shots on goal. A supportive crowd watched as the Dragons created multiple opportunities to try to take the lead. Their “strong” defense kept the Spartans from scoring until late in the first half.

The gameplay of both teams changed in the second half. The Spartans began pressing the Dragons with hard defense, forcing juniors Kahar McCullum and Aidan Wedderien, and sophomore Cole Chilcutt, to exit the game with minor injuries. Rio Mesa scored for a second time on a fast break minutes into the second half.

With the score 2-0 in favor of the Spartans, the Dragons adjusted the lineup. Junior Miles Gillespie scored for the Dragons with 18 minutes to go in the second half. Gillespie’s goal gave Foothill hope for a comeback.

One goal was just not enough for the varsity team after a third goal was scored my Rio Mesa just before the final whistle making the final score 3-1.

Coach Wedderien said that senior Andres Coronel impressed him again with his game at the offensive and defensive end and he was named the MVP of the game.

Coronel thought his team played with intensity.

 

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“I think that we played better than we expected to do,” said Coronel. “I give both teams credit. Rio Mesa played really hard but I thought we had a great first half.”

Wedderien reflected on the intense gameflow.

“I was really happy with our first half of play,” said Wedderien. “Unfortunately we had some injuries in the second half that limited our options to just two subs. I want to work on our second half playing. We need to keep the intensity up.”

 

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Wedderien has some big goals for this year’s team.

“I want to place better than we did last year,” Wedderien said. “Last year we got fourth [place] and I think we can get third. I’m pushing for us to get second place.”

Background Photo Credit: Grace Carey/The Foothill Dragon Press

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Boys’ soccer stumped by Rio Mesa in home opener