MSoc: Warriors secure rare win over Hawks

The seniors were on a mission, and supplied the motivation in Westmont Men’s Soccer’s 2-0 Golden State Athletic Conference victory over the Hawks of San Diego Christian (1-6, 0-1 GSAC). At least one drought in California is over.

“Our seniors had never beaten San Diego Christian,” reported Westmont head coach Dave Wolf. “They were determined not to have their careers end that way.”

Though Westmont (5-2, 2-0) held a 14-5 series advantage coming into the game, all five of the losses had come in the last three years – three of them in overtime games.

“I think it was a mature performance in a difficult setting to play in and against an opponent that has been very difficult for us to beat,” said Wolf. “The field wasn’t great at Cuyamaca Community College and it was very warm. It had all of the features of a long afternoon. But the guys gave what I would characterize as a very professional performance. We got a goal in each half and then we did a decent bit of defending, especially right at the beginning of the second half. San Diego Christian came out energized and they were fighting hard to get the game on level terms. We had to survive a little bit for the first 15 minutes of the second half. Then we got back ahold of things.”

The Warriors’ first goal came in the 21st minute.

“Jonathan Yeeles made a run into the wide channel and Wilton Quintero (named yesterday the GSAC Offensive Player of the Week) found him on the right flank with a ball over the top. Jonny got on the ball, then cut the defender and served a perfect ball into the box. It went right over a defender’s head. Tanner (Wolf) made a very aggressive forward run into the box. His header was perfect. He nodded it right down off the goal line into the corner. It was a classy goal.

“We were pleased because we have been trying to get more aggressive runs into the box out of our guys. To see that happen, and to score a goal that way, was very good.”

The second goal came in the 54th minute.

“Tanner played a ball forward to Matt Lariviere. It was a good through ball and it put Mattie into the box in a dangerous situation,” described the coach. “They defended Mattie pretty well, but he kept at it, dug a ball out of a tackle and slipped it to Cody Howen who finished it first time. Mattie did not give up on the play. He kept fighting and scrapping and dug it out. Cody doesn’t need more than one chance these days. He has gotten very comfortable in front of the goal and in the box. He is leading as a senior and as a captain.”

Wolf was also pleased with the play of goalkeeper Josh Glover, who yesterday was named the GSAC Defensive Player of the Week.

“We got one world class save out of Josh Glover on a ball that was headed for the top corner,” noted Wolf. “He made a fingertip, one handed save. Our goals-against average is under one (0.70) and we have four shutouts on the year. Josh is playing at a very high level right now. When you have a goalkeeper playing as good as he is playing, he exudes a confidence that permeates throughout the team. When Josh made that save you could hear the collective sigh of relief on the bench, but there was also a little bit of awe.”

The Warriors, who have outscored their opponents 17-5 this season, will seek to extend the rainy season when they resume GSAC play on Saturday. Westmont will host The Master’s at Thorrington Field at 12:00 p.m.