BSoc: DP defeats Dons on Montalvo’s goal

Pablo Montalvo smashed the ball into the net for the game’s only goal, lifting Dos Pueblos to a 1-0 Channel League boys soccer win over Santa Barbara High at Peabody Stadium on Tuesday.

The ball landed at Montalvo’s feet after it was knocked around in front of Santa Barbara goalkeeper Angel Cervantes. The sophomore didn’t hesitate and hit a blistering shot past everyone in the 61st minute.

The result puts Dos Pueblos at 2-0 in league and 7-6-3 overall. Santa Barbara, which is ranked fourth in CIF Division 1, fell to 11-3-4 and 1-1 in league.

Montalvo was brought in the second half to wear down Santa Barbara’s defense. Before scoring, he made a run up the left side and laid the ball back for Tim Heiduk for an open shot at the top of 18-yard box. Heiduk hit it over the cross bar.

“We were using his speed a little bit in the second half; we wanted to keep him fresh,” DP coach Matt York said of Montalvo. “Their defenders already had 40 minutes under their belt, and we thought we might take advantage of that.”

The speed of Jessie Jimenez set up the game-winning goal. He broke free down the left side and earned corner kick.

“Those guys using their speed on the left side, we thought that was something we could take advantage of,” York said of Jimenez and Montalvo. That’s what happened on that play.”

Jimenez sent his corner kick toward the far post, where Heiduk collected it, fought off Santa Barbara defenders and the goalkeeper and hit the ball into the middle of the box. Santa Barbara defenders were unable to clear it and the ball ended up on the left foot of Montalvo.

“Tim had the ball down there for a while, beat a couple of defenders with his muscle, his might and will,” York said. “He was pretty paramount on that play, setting it up for Pablo, who seemingly came out of nowhere. He struck it nicely with his left foot.”

Montalvo said he called off Jimenez from taking the shot.

“I told Jessie to leave it because I knew I was at the right place,” he said. “It was at my left and I’m a lefty.”

Santa Barbara coach Todd Heil said the goal came down to his team’s inability to clear the ball.

“In those situations we tell the kids you’re basically trying to crush the ball out of the 18,” he said. “I think we had two little taps at it and the ball ends up with the right guy, with the left foot and there he is to bury it.

“We only have to look at ourselves in that situation because the ball could have been cleared two times and it wasn’t,” he continued. “If you’re going to let the ball stick around the 18, you’re going to pay for it.”

Heil said his team was playing at home for the first time in a month and it wasn’t sharp like the other night when it beat San Marcos.

“I don’t know if we were nervous. We did not seem ready to play,” he said

Santa Barbara fired an early shot on goal but DP goalkeeper Alex Mathews was on it. Mathews played a solid game for the Chargers. He made big saves on free kicks by Jorge Garcia Torres in the 68th minute and Brandon Sanchez in the 75th.

The Chargers also got stellar defensive performances from center backs Drew Richard and Calvin Schipper.

“Richard is a senior and he’s playing a new position for us, “ York said. “Last year, he was one of our goalies and played outside back. I love his leadership, so we wanted to be him in there (at centerback).”

Schipper is a sophomore, and he played like a seasoned veteran on the back, denying the Dons from breaking into the penalty area.

“He’s really the heart of the team,” York said. “We want to give him the game MVP today.”

It was a satisfying win for the Chargers at Peabody Stadium

“We don’t get a lot of wins here,” York said. “It’s definitely a tough place to play. It has a lot memories, it has a lot of history and a lot of tradition, something we’re well aware of and we respect.”

He added that the team is starting to hit its stride after going .500 in its non-league games.

“We feel like we’re picking up some momentum and some good steam going into league and that’s what we wanted to do.”