Dons ride the wind into Buena tourney semifinals

Santa Barbara extended its unbeaten streak to 11 matches by posting two wins at the Buena New Year’s Soccer Tournament on a cold, windy Wednesday.

The Dons started the day with a 3-1 win over Oxnard and later beat Paso Robles 1-0 to earn a berth in the semifinals. They’ll play Pacifica on Thursday at 10:15 a.m.

Camarillo and Dos Pueblos will play in the other semifinal.

The championship is at 2 p.m.

Marco Sanchez gave Santa Barbara a 1-0 lead against Oxnard in the 32nd minute.

“He played his best game of the year,” Santa Barbara coach Todd Heil said of Sanchez. “He played tremendous. He was rewarded with that first goal.”

Oxnard tied the score before halftime, but Santa Barbara regained the lead in the 50th minute when Alfredo Ibarra scored off a flick from Sanford Spivey.

Sachio Badham completed the scoring with his first varsity goal in the 58th minute.

The Dons and Paso Robles played in a wind storm at Ventura High, and Santa Barbara prevailed when the wind tossed around a long throw-in by Niko Comati and the ball was mishandled by the goalkeeper and went into the net.

“The wind was howling. It was horrible.” Heil said. ‘It was the longest 60 minutes. It was not fun for either team.”