Trio of Warriors score in CIF-opening shutout

The Carpinteria Warriors were not only challenged by El Monte on Friday but the weather conditions as well in their Division 5 CIF boys soccer playoff opener at Carpinteria Valley Memorial Stadium.

The Tri-Valley League champions’ play, however, made it seem as if they were accustomed to playing in wind and rain. They got three first-half goals from Ismael Soriano, Sergio Ortega and John Requejo for a final score line of 3-0.

“I told the boys we had to take advantage in the first half as we were going with the wind and we did just that,” said head coach Daniel Torres.

The Warriors (17-3-3) extend their winning streak to seven games.

The first goal came early as Soriano found the ball at his feet from a corner kick taken by Edwin Elizarraras in the 8th minute. Soriano was able to collect the ball and bend it around the El Monte goalkeeper for the score.

Carpinteria’s next strike came from a long shot from Ortega on the left side of the field in the 30th minute. Ortega collected the ball, turned and hit a shot that deflected off an El Monte defender’s head into the upper-V of the goal.

Carpinteria quickly added another five minutes later as Requejo lost his defender and found space in the box. Once again, Edwin Elizarraras provided the service from the left side and Requejo was able to coolly finish his header past a diving El Monte keeper.

The Warriors were able to hold possession throughout the game despite the unfavorable weather. Genaro Hurtado and Oscar Montes nearly found the net as each player had shots that hit the post.

Torres praised the play from his defenders as they held strong throughout the game, especially in the second half when the Warriors were fighting against the wind.

“Our defense has been playing so well,” said Torres. “We have four sophomores in the back and they look like they’ve been playing with each other for years.”

The Warriors now look forward to their second-round tournament matchup versus either Arroyo Grande or Garden Grove Santiago on Wednesday.

Torres emphasized the importance of staying focused during their playoff run.

“It’s just mental now. I am getting the team ready mentally to win four more games because that is our goal,” he said.