By Horst Noppenberger | LB Indy
LBHS vs. Saddleback
On Wednesday, Jan. 26, the Laguna Beach high school boys soccer team traveled to Santa Ana to take on the league leading Saddleback High School Roadrunners. First half action began with Breaker mid-fielder Reese Barton striking a volley just over the Roadrunner net. The Roadrunners responded with a series of offensive surges culminating with a goal in the 18th minute on a flick over the Breaker goalkeeper. The Breakers tied the game 1 to 1 when Pierce Neal threaded his way through the Roadrunner defense and one on one with the keeper, sent a quick shot into the far corner of the net. As the game progressed, the Breakers struggled to find their rhythm on the rough, grassy Saddleback pitch, one of the few grass fields that they have played on this season. However, Saddleback looked very comfortable on their home field and added two more goals before the close of the first half, increasing their lead to 3 to 1.
Moments into the second half, the Roadrunners put the game out of reach on a stunning shot from distance into the upper corner of the Breaker net. It was apparent that this just was not going to be their day when a succession of shots on goal by Breakers Chris Tellez and Jake Hexberg sailed just inches over the Roadrunner cross bar. Saddleback scored their fifth goal of the game on a well-executed set piece.
LBHS vs. Calvary Chapel
The Breakers bounced back from the Saddleback loss with a 3 to 2 victory over the Calvary Chapel High School Eagles on Friday night at home. It was a seesaw battle in which the lead changed hands several times during the course of the game. The Eagles went up 1 to 0 early in the first half with a stunning shot from the top of the Breaker 18 yard box. Joseph Rousseau tied the score one minute later when he used his break away speed to outrun several Eagle defenders and send a cracker from 20 yards out into the Eagle net. The Eagles countered with several offensive bursts deep into the final third. However, Breaker goal keeper, Bryce Williamson took the momentum away from the Eagles when he blocked a shot on goal which appeared destined for it’s target. Chris Tellez put the Breakers up top just before the end of the first half when he recovered a deflected shot by Reece Barton and volleyed the ball into the Eagle goal. At the end of the first half the Breakers were up 2 to 1.
The Eagles emerged from the break by surprising the Breakers with a dazzling shot from approximately 35 yards out which dipped into the Breaker net inches below the cross bar, tying the game 2 to 2. With minutes remaining, neither team looked like they were willing to settle for a tie. The Breakers came close to taking the lead when a shot from the top of the 6-yard box by Chris Tellez was tipped at the last second by the Eagle goalkeeper just over the net. The Breakers were awarded a golden opportunity when Brogan O’Bryan was fouled in the Eagle box at the 82nd minute. Reece Barton took the penalty kick for the Breakers and found the lower left corner of the Eagle net.
While this exciting game ended 3 to 2 in favor of the Breakers, both teams deserve credit for playing their hearts out from the opening to the final whistle, from one end of the pitch to the other.
The Breakers face Estancia on Wednesday and Costa Mesa on Friday. Both games will be played at Estancia high school. The Breakers will be looking for some big wins to stay in contention for the CIF play-offs.
The LBHS junior varsity boy’s soccer team scored a 2 to 1 victory over San Juan Hills earlier that day. With the game 0 to 0 at the half, Adam Farsheed made his presence known with a stunning header on a corner kick to give LBHS the lead. Then moments later Noah Garrett put LBHS up 2 to 0 on a cracking shot from the top of the 18-yard box. As dense fog settled unto the pitch, San Juan Hills scored on a lose ball in front of the Laguna Beach net. Laguna Beach was able to hold off a late charge from San Juan Hills to secure the victory.