Lions soccer teams struggle in district play
By Alonzo Garza
The Lions’ Varsity soccer team participated in the Bastrop soccer tournament from Thursday, Jan. 24 – Saturday, Jan. 26. The Lions had a hard time dealing with tough tournament competition, losing all three of their games. Lions lost to the Bastrop Bears 5-0, to Akins 1-0 and to Austin High 7-0.
The Lions also lost 5-1 to t
he Hendrickson Hawks at Lion Stadium on Tuesday, Jan. 22 and beat Smithville 4-1 on the road on Monday, Jan. 21.
The Lions opened the tournament on Thursday, Jan. 24 against a tough Bastrop team. The Bears possessed the ball for much of the game. The Lion defense was unable to mark tight enough to prevent the Bears from scoring.
The Lions lost 5-0 despite their best efforts. Jose Jaimes, Bobby Henrikson and Gabe Atwell paced the Lions with good physical play and determination.
The Lions committed at the defensive end of the field during their second tournament game. The Lions played against Akins and even though they could not mount much of an offensive attack, sensational defense kept the game scoreless until a crucial mistake at the defensive end cost the Lions the game. The game ended 1-0.
In their third tournament game, the Lions faced off against a tough Austin High squad. With seven Varsity players out of commission due to injuries, the Lions took the field. Austin used their speed from the onset, and the game was 4-0 in their favor at halftime. By the end of the game, their lead had grown to a final 7-0 score.
Lions vs. Pflugerville Hendrickson
The Lions Varsity soccer team hosted the Pflugerville Hendrickson Hawks in a district contest at Lion Stadium on Tuesday, Jan. 22. The game ended with a 5-1 loss for the Lions.
The Hawks went on the instant offensive at the start of the game. The Lions defended against the quick, talented Hawk team, creating counter-attack chances for the Lion squad. Ten minutes into the game, the Hawks pulled ahead with a goal and ten minutes later they took a 2-0 lead.
The Lions found an offensive identity after the second goal. Junior Matthew Carneiro found Jacob Berry just inside the penalty area with a good pass and run combination. Berry tucked the ball away in the upper right hand corner and the half ended 2-1.
“We need tighter marks on the defensive end,” Head Soccer Coach Ramez Antoun said. “Offensively, we are ok. We need to keep making diagonal runs and play the ball wide.”
The second half began with the Hawks playing deep in the Lions’ end of the field. Hendrickson tacked on another goal in the opening minutes. Before it was all over, the Lions surrendered two additional goals. Scoring ended at 5-1 with the Hawks on top.
Despite their loss, the Lions played well. Defender Colton Vogel, goalkeeper Mauricio Gutierrez, and midfielder Cameron Peters outdid themselves. Johnny Juarez and Robbie Clifton also played a gritty, physical game.
Lions vs. Smithville
The Lions Varsity soccer team traveled to Smithville for their second district game on Monday, Jan. 21. The game was originally scheduled for Friday, Jan. 18 but was postponed because of repeated lightning strikes in the area.
The Lions came out ready to play. Midfielders Peters and Jaimes set the tone early in the game with great passing and physical play. Seventeen minutes in, their playing paid off. The Lions earned a free kick 35 yards from the goal. Jaimes put a great flighted ball into the box and sophomore Cristobal Ocampo was there to head it home.
Minutes later, Matthew Carneiro put a great through ball into Jose Gonzalez’s run ending the first half with the Lions leading 2-0.
“Good things happen when we play the ball wide,” Antoun said. “All they had to do was keep it up in the second half and they did.”
The second half began with Smithville finding a little offensive punch, but the Lion defenders were up to the challenge. Atwell, Vogel, Clifton, and Juarez were on their defensive game, and the Tigers were turned back at every opportunity.
After a Smithville goal, the Lions found the net again. Ocampo sent a good ball through to Michael Williams, who netted the ball. The Lions earned another free kick deep in Tiger territory. Peters put a great cross on goal, and junior Juarez went up strong and headed the ball home. The game ended with the Lions winning 4-1.
The Lions returned to district action by traveling to Manor on Tuesday, Jan. 29. Check next week’s Post-Register for highlights and scores.
See you at the game.