Canyon High girls soccer tried to build momentum Tuesday afternoon, but Hart High’s defense was waiting to knock each attempt down as the Indians earned a 2-1 win at home.
“We’re not giving time to teams to think about much,” said Hart coach Guilherme Mitrovitch. “And that makes them make bad decisions or makes us steal the ball high up the field. That’s something we’ve been working on and in the last few games I think we’re doing better with that.”
Hart (16-2-4 overall, 4-0-3 in Foothill) scored two first-half goals to build their own momentum — the first from Tori Waldeck and the second from Izabel Reyes.
Waldeck scored at the 20-minute mark after winning a one-on-one battle with a defender. Reyes navigated a cluster of Canyon players and scored in the 31st minute.
The Indians defense and midfield used the energy to their advantage, keeping their shape, while winning second balls and balls in the air and showing what makes them the current first-place team in the Foothill League.
“(At halftime) we just decided to play to feet and connect with each other and talk more and play on the ground because Hart is really good up in the air and we don’t have height like them,” said Canyon’s Isa Rector. “So we just talked about playing more as a team.”
The Cowboys (7-10-2, 3-3-1) pushed back in the second half. Rector scored in the 54th minute off a Tayler Clarke pass.
“It bumped up the intensity,” said Canyon coach Derek Rusk. “That one goal pushes you to get the second.”
Claudia McKail, who has 13 goals this season, was key in setting up Cowboy plays, but often found herself double-teamed by Indian defenders.
“She’s a quality player and we knew that she was going to play high up,” . “We definitely knew her qualities and I thought we did a decent job containing her most of the time.”
Canyon returns home on Friday to face Valencia. Hart will play their last two games of league on the road, starting with West Ranch on Friday.
West Ranch 0, Saugus 0
The Wildcats remain undefeated in the Foothill League with a record of 3-0-4. They are 9-3-6 overall. The Centurions broke a three-game losing streak and are now 5-11-4 overall and 1-3-3 in league.
Valencia 2, Golden Valley 1
Kayla Kukaua and Autumn Moore each had a goal for the Vikings, and Ashley Rens scored for the Grizzlies with an assist from Kiara Gunn. Valencia is 11-7-2 overall and 4-2-1 in league, while Golden Valley is 5-12-2 and 0-7.