By Ryan Menzie
Signal Sports Writer
The Valencia Vikings (9-6-2, 8-1-1) remain the No. 1 seed in Foothill League boys’ soccer with a commanding 3-0 victory against the West Ranch Wildcats (2-8-2, 1-6-2) on Saturday.
The Vikings now control their own destiny as they look to retake the Foothill League title from the Hart Indians.
“Our team really executed well today and competed really hard,” said Vikings head coach Kevin Honaker. “The boys are beat up from playing so many games so we’ve just been trying to get them rest and being mentally focused and relaxed. The league title is in our sights so that is our goal. We want to try to reach that and focus on shooting for that as our target.”
The Vikings got on the board early with a goal from Lukas Goulet off a corner kick from Rami Maroun at the 33-minute mark. Just seven minutes later, Maroun got another assist off a corner kick, this time to Azael Jovel.
The Wildcats needed to regroup and get more shots in the second half. The adjustments led to more aggressive play, but with the Vikings’ physicality and toughness on defense, the Wildcats were unable to score a goal.
The Vikings would remain relentless with Goulet scoring once again, this time off a pass from Josh Book at the 30-minute mark in the second half.
“We just want to come out and do our best and come out strong,” said Goulet. “We came out strong and scored two goals early, but it didn’t solidify the game so we just had to keep our pace up. We have a real shot of winning the league title, so now we got to go out and beat Hart.”
With the win and a Hart loss on Saturday, this sets up a Foothill League showdown between the two teams, with them playing each other on Thursday and Saturday. The winner of these final two matches would more than likely be named the Foothill League champion.
“The COVID-19 gods haven’t been good to us,” said Wildcats head coach Mike Kane. “We played three games in a row and we looked like we were a little tired today. I saw a tired team, but we battled. I’m proud of the kids for how they fought, so I can’t complain. We just have been a little unlucky.”