When Canyon boys soccer’s David Hernandez nabbed the ball at the top of the box in the 77th minute, all he could hear was one word.
“I just sprinted as fast as my legs could take me and then once I took the touch, everybody said shoot, so I just shot it and luckily it went in,” Hernandez said. “Coach always says put your name in the paper and I did it tonight.”
Hernandez scored the second goal in Canyon’s 2-1 win over Saugus at Saugus on Tuesday afternoon.
It was a stark difference from the 4-0 loss the Cowboys (6-12-4 overall, 4-3-2 in Foothill League) had suffered to the Centurions in the first half of league.
“We knew we had to come and do work because they came to our house and they beat us 4-0, so we had to come and show them how it’s done,” said Hernandez. “We had to come and destroy their playoffs.”
After a scoreless first half, it was unclear who would have the edge in the match. On the other side of halftime, however, it was Canyon that came in hot.
Saugus (8-6-7, 2-3-4) held its own, however, despite being without three starters due to injuries. With 10 minutes remaining in the game, the Cents switched Matt Sayers from keeper to striker in an attempt to give the offense some momentum.
Sayers knocked in a goal for the Centurions shortly after, but it was the Cowboys who kept the momentum. Adam Rodriguez scored off set piece on a kick that somehow avoided every player on the field and hit the right post in the 75th minute.
“Canyon had a lot of energy and they were on our half for the majority of the second half,” said Saugus coach Seth Groller. “And we felt like we couldn’t have a tie today. We needed a win.”
With the win, the Cowboys are tied with West Ranch for second place in the Foothill League at 14 points. Hart is in first with 25 points.
Hart 3, West Ranch 2
Jose Leon scored in the 20th minute for Indians (14-6-2, 8-0-1), then Darwin Herrera followed with a goal in the 55th minute. Brandon Martinez was credited with the assist. Lawrence Luna finished off Hart’s scoring in the 70th minute.
Santiago Torres and Anthony Lambrinidis each scored for the Wildcats (8-4-4, 4-3-2).
Hart will end league on Thursday at Saugus at 3:15 p.m. West Ranch will host Golden Valley on the same day at the same time.
Valencia 2, Golden Valley 1
Anthony Hernandez scored for the Grizzlies (3-12-2, 0-8-1) in their senior night game.
Valencia moves to 5-8-4 and 3-4-2 with the win and travel to Canyon on Thursday for a 5 p.m. contest. Golden Valley will be at West Ranch at 3:15.