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Canyon keeps hold of league

Valencia, though, is not far behind

Posted: January 27, 2009 9:15 p.m.
Updated: January 28, 2009 4:55 a.m.
 
With five minutes remaining in the first half of Tuesday night’s boys soccer game between Valencia and Canyon, both offenses lit up the scoreboard.

For the other 75 minutes, however, the ball stayed out of the net.

The teams played to a 1-1 draw at Valencia High keeping Canyon (7-7-2, 3-1-1) in first place in the Foothill League and Valencia (6-0-3, 2-1-2) nipping at its heals.

“Our goal was to not come out of here with a loss, and I’m happy with a tie,” said Canyon head coach Khris Savage.

For the first 35 minutes, both teams battled to a stalemate as neither offenses could break through.

The Vikings had a chance early when Alex McIntyre had a one-on-one with the goalkeeper, but couldn’t capitalize as Andrew Wilson made a diving stop with his back leg to preserve the tie.

In the 35th minute, Valencia drew first blood when a 15-yard shot from Wesley Engal slipped past Wilson, putting the Vikings ahead 1-0.

Engal’s shot came after a throw-in from the Vikings’ Chris Hernandez landed right in the middle of the field about 12 yards out and was kicked back immediately to Engal.

Engal then ripped a ball that found the corner of the back of the net for the lead.

The play came after head coach Tony Scalercio made a few changes to the lineup leading to the offensive push.

“I had to make some adjustments and that gave us some extra momentum,” Scalercio said.

The momentum only lasted for two minutes, as the Cowboys struck right back with help from their bench.

In the 37th minute, Canyon’s Frank Diaz rifled a 20-yard shot into the Valencia net, knotting the game at 1-1.

Bench play was a key for Canyon as three starters were unavailable for the game.

Sipriano Virgil, Jose Perez and Matthew Burgess filled in as replacement starters.

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