The Santa Clarita Christian School girls soccer team walked off the field ecstatic after its Heritage League game against rival Trinity Classical Academy at Central Park on Monday.
Scoring early and often, the Cardinals looked like a well-oiled machine after netting eight goals in the first half and another five in the second half to shut out Trinity 13-0.
“I’m really proud of how they played,” said SCCS girls head coach Lacey Lehman. “We have been working, especially after we lost the first game, it was kind of like, ‘Oh man.’ But this game, I’m really excited that we are competing really well. I think we figured out a formation that works for us with the personnel that we have and I’m really excited.”
Viviana Soler opened up the game’s scoring for the Cardinals (2-2 overall, 2-1 Heritage League) just six minutes into the game, beating a Trinity defender to a back-pass. She nestled her shot into the right corner to give the Cardinals an early advantage.
Minutes later, the flood gates opened as Briley Phelps scored in the 11th and 16th minute and Sydney Boswell scored, the first of her three goals for a hat trick, a minute later to give the Cardinals a 4-0 advantage just about halfway through the first half of play.
“I think that our high pressure and intensity at the start of the game helped us a lot,” Boswell said. “We went in with a lot of confidence, hoping to get this win. I think we are pretty good this year. We seem to get along well and we play as a team, which also helps us go along throughout the season.”
Before the end of the half, Boswell scored two more goals to complete her hat trick, while Sophia Soler and Dakota Rappleye also got on the stat sheet with a goal each.
At halftime, the Knights trailed 8-0.
Trinity (0-5, 0-3) responded by trying to mount counterattacks with Carsyn Crone’s speed and quickness, but the Cardinals shutdown run after run.
With command of the game, the Cardinals continued to push forward as Rappeleye scored her second goal of the contest just three minutes into the second half to reinvigorate the Cardinals’ attack once again.
“I told them, I want us to work on what we have been working on no matter what,” Lehman said. “That’s possessing the ball, finding feet and making sure our press is on point and working on our shape. I think making sure we are critiquing those things even though we are winning by a lot and that we are still working on what we need to practice to be better at because we are not always going to win every game and we need to make sure we are preparing for the next game.”
Lexi Kostjuk scored the Cardinals 10th goal, while Avery Osborn (two) and Avery Babikan scored the final two goals on the contest to give SCCS a win.
The Cardinals pick play back up on Tuesday, Jan. 7, at St. Monica High School, while the Knights play Boron at 3 p.m. at Tesoro Sports Park on Wednesday.
“We are out here and kind of a force to be reckoned with and we are excited to go far, hopefully, this year,” Lehman said. “Last year, we started off really well and didn’t end as well as we would have hoped to so I hope that we can continue what we have got going on.”