Men’s soccer stomp Giants, 2-1

Sebastian Noren, Sebastian Noren, and Sebastian Noren

The Men’s soccer team got a comfortable start to the season with a 2-1 victory over College of the Sequoias Giants at home Friday in their first game of the 2008 campaign.

Coach John Sisterson was happy to get a win in their first game. “It’s always important to get a win, but it’s more about how you play,” Sisterson said. “I didn’t think we played well but a win is a win.”

The Vaqueros took control of the match from the get go, but had trouble creating scoring chances in the opening of the game. In the 13th minute Mark Knight overcame the Giants keeper and made it 1-0 City College with a header off an assist by Jordan Leeming. This was the first real scoring opportunity for the Vaqs. Knight was the leading scorer for the Vaqs last year with 28 goals. “It was good to get a win to build up some confidence early in the season,” Knight said. “Personally I’m satisfied even though there was a lot of doggy work though, lots of running.”

City College kept the pressure on after the goal and continued get a lot of space on the flanks as the Giants attempted to push forward. In the 18th minute Jordan Leeming received a yellow card after a foul in the middle of the field. The Vaqs kept creating chances and in the 21st minute Beville Rose had a good long range strike but the shot went wide. In the 25th minutes Stuart Kirk had a nice chance on the rebound after a free kick by Waid Ibrahim.

In the 33rd minute the Vaqs increased the lead to 2-0 after a 23-yard strike by Scott Wells that made it into the back of the net. Mark Knight almost got his second goal of the night a minute later when he had a good left foot shot go wide of the target. Knight was creating a lot of chances and showed that he can use his head and both his feet effectively. City College defender Casper Dyg had a 30-yard strike that forced the Giants keeper to stretch and push the ball out for a City College corner. The Vaqs were in control of the game and the Giants became frustrated and picked up 3 yellow cards in the first half of play. The Giants did not have a single shot on goal in the first half and Ricky Placencia in the Vaqueros goal only had to pick down a couple of crosses.

The opening 10 minutes of the second half was a battle for control in midfield, and the Vaqs were the ones that came out on top with some strong physical play. Mark Knight saw a good shot go wide in the 56th minute after a good pass by Heitor Oliveira. City College was in total control and central midfielder Matt Winecki had a header go just over the bar in the 60th minute. Mark Knight had a good chance on a break away in the 62nd minute but his strike went wide right on Jose Martinez in the Giants goal.

The Giants first shot on goal came in the 67th minute Placencia made a great save but conceded a corner kick. The tempo dropped considerable compared to the first half and the Giants players seemed to give up half way through the second half.

The Vaqs almost made it 3-0 after a shot by Waid Ibrahim but Giants defensemen Michael Rondon cleared it off the line. The Vaqs had another ball in the net in the second half that was called off for roughing against the keeper.

The Vaqueros had opportunities to increase their lead but lacked the finishing touch in the second half.

The Giants got a consolation goal in the last minute of the game by Bradford Broderson after a free kick right outside the penalty area. Coach Sisterson was not happy with the second half play. “We gave away a sloppy goal in the end, you should never let the opponents get a free kick right outside the area that late in the game,” Sisterson said.

The next game for the Vaqueros is at 7.30 p.m. on Friday at La Playa Stadium against the Riverside City College Tigers.