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Posted: February 1, 2008 6:42 a.m.
Updated: April 3, 2008 2:02 a.m.

Valencia High's Dan Palmer (10) and West Ranch High's Matt Barraso, right, jump for a header in the first half of the Vikings' 1-0 victory over the Wildcats.03

The Valencia High and West Ranch High boys soccer teams took turns exchanging shots at each other's goals most of the afternoon, but the Vikings managed to walk away with a 1-0 victory Thursday.

A Brooks Walsh goal with 15 minutes left in the game was the deciding factor.
A long throw-in by Valencia bounced off a Wildcats defender and in front of Walsh from 18 yards out from the goal. Walsh sent a shot that just passed underneath the crossbar and into the net for the only score of the game.
"It's my first varsity goal," Walsh said. "I couldn't believe it. I just got called up from JV."
With the win Valencia, which tied Hart Tuesday, improves to 2-4-1 in league and is looking to do some damage in the remaining games of the season.
"We're building momentum in the second half," Vikings head coach Tony Scalercio said. "We're down toward the bottom right now. Every game is a must win."
West Ranch took four shots in the second half but couldn't connect.
The Wildcats' Navid Mahabadi had the best look of the second half but sent the shot straight into goalie Alex McIntyre's hands, the only save of the half.
Valencia finished with six shots of its own in the half.
In the first half, Valencia had several chances to take the early lead but was unable to take advantage of them.
Dan Palmer missed a golden opportunity in the opening minutes of the game. Palmer took advantage of a one-on-one opportunity but misfired slightly to the left of the goal.
Halfway through the first half, the Vikings got two more good looks within one minute of each other which ended straight in the hands of West Ranch goalkeeper Ted Johansen.
The Vikings finished with five shots on goal in the first half which also resulted in three Wildcats' saves. All of West Ranch's saves came in the first half.
"They played a pretty tough game," Walsh said. "It took tons and tons and tons of attempts to score."
West Ranch outshot Valencia in the first half with seven shots.
The Vikings had a close call in the final play of the first half. Sergio Torres sent a pass to Marvin Delgado, who fired a shot straight into the hands of McIntyre.
In all, four yellow cards were handed out, including one to Scalercio.
The Vikings have a tough game ahead as they take on first-place Saugus today.
"Saugus is a very good team," Scalercio said. I'm just hoping we can squeak one out on them."


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