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VC Falls to SI in WCAL Opener 12/08

The Valley Christian Boys Varsity Soccer team opened WCAL play today, hosting St. Ignatius.  The weather was chilly, but sunny, and the field was in perfect condition.

The first twenty minutes of the match were fairly even with the teams trading minor goal scoring chances.   That was until SI broke through about 32 minutes in. 

The Warriors were unlucky to have a defender slip and fall in the box, leaving his man unmarked.  The ball found it's way to the unmarked SI player who finished from 7 yards out into the side netting, there was nothing Austin Mansker could do to stop it. 1-0 SI

The game would go to halftime that way, and Coach Basanese took the kids to the locker room to make an attempt at inspiring the team.

"I just didn't feel like we were playing with the heart that SI was.  I'm ok if we lose games where we give our all, but if a team 'out desires' us, I have a problem with that.  At halftime, I simply asked the team to invest in this game physically and mentally."

The second half started off better than the first for VC.  A few opportunities came their way, but nothing major.  The SI defense did well to contain Alex de Leon who had scored 6 goals in the previous two games.

"They (SI's defense) were very well organized.  We had a lot of trouble breaking them down today.  That's the best defensive team we've faced this year, and by far the most disciplined.  We need to be better offensively, but give credit to SI's back line, they played great," Basanese said.

In the 10th minute of the second half, SI scored again on a well played through ball.  The SI forward barely beat a sliding Mansker to the ball, and finished into an empty net, 2-0 SI.

The Warriors had a chance to pull within one goal with about 10 minutes to play when Jake Joseph fired a free kick at the SI goal.  The 'keeper made a save on the shot, but gave up a rebound that bounced straight out to the edge of the 6-yard box but there was no VC play following up. 

Opportunities like that have to be finished said Basanese.

"That was a good illustration of how we played today.  If we follow that shot, it's an easy goal, and we're back in this thing.  As it turned out, the goalie was able to get up, and dive on the ball before we could finish it.  A little bit of ball watching there cost us a goal."

The game would end 2-0 in favor of the visiting Wildcats, and while the it wasn't VC's best game there were some positives that stood out to the coaching staff.

"We did some things well.  For one, we defended much much better today than we did against Santa Cruz.  We marked the outside half's much better, and our backline played a good game.  We got good contributions from Ruiz, Blake and Wally back there.  That said, our touch was off today, and at the end of the day, the team that wanted it more won.  Well deserved."  Basanese said following the game.

"We don't have time to sulk.  We have Los Gatos on Monday, and they are a fantastic team.  I think that we'll learn from this that lack of effort should never cost us a game, especially at home."


The Warriors will travel to Los Gatos for the final game of pool play in the Homestead Christmas Cup.  A win will assure VC a spot in the next round.  Incidentally, no VC team has ever advanced out of pool play in this tournament.


Photos from today's game were again taken by John Basanese Sr.  Special thanks to Mr. Basanese for taking the time to be at the game.  The photos turned out great, and can be found by clicking here.


VCSoccer.com Man of the Match: Blake Cardoza

St. Ignatius 1 1 2
Valley Christian 0 0 0


VC Starting Lineup: Mansker, Walitsch, Ruiz, Cardoza, Nelson, Tarangioli, Joseph, Cordeiro, Rothenberg, Alex de Leon, Fahmy

Game time:  11:00 am
Weather:  Mostly sunny, 60 degrees